Window Into the Classroom: Enrichment Programs

MIS Enrichment programs are afterschool that help students in a variety of ways. Whether a student is animating new ideas in the Animation and Robotic design course, or developing new movement skills in Hip Hop, Enrichment programs support and expand new and existing skills in your child.

Some of these clubs travel to state competitions to help students stand out and show their projects. Students in both our Lego League team and MathCounts team have won multiple awards and traveled thousands of miles after training many months in highly competitive tournaments.  These two clubs have also developed support from MIS Alumni that come back to our school to help new students in the club and dedicated volunteers that make these clubs possible. Looking forward into 2019, MIS will continue to produce new clubs and bring your student strong programming that challenges them throughout the year.

Take a look at our new Winter 2019 Enrichment Programs here, the clubs begin meeting the week of January 14th.

And another big thanks to all our volunteers!

Window Into the Classroom: How We Organize Ourselves

For the unit of “How We Organize Ourselves” the 4/5 multiage studied the central idea, “Justice and balance in a society may be reached by the active participation of citizens and elected officials.”

In order to provoke the students to think about rights and responsibilities of citizens, the 4/5 team created a scenario in which the teachers acted like dictators for part of a day in class.  After this simulation, the students reflected as a class upon how it felt for them to experience life within a dictatorship vs. how they feel in their daily lives living in a democracy. They noted that fairness and participation can vary widely among societies.  And they gained a greater appreciation for the benefits of democracy.

Students delved into the lines of inquiry of this unit by focusing on participation, justice, and action in society.  They studied the three branches of government and the checks and balances system of American Democracy. Students used graphic organizers to compare and contrast different governments and researched a variety of leaders and their governing methods.  

For their summative assessment, students created a school-wide election. Every student at MIS had the opportunity to vote what type of pie we would eat during our annual Thanksgiving celebration.  They developed physical and digital ballots, encouraged the whole MIS student body and faculty to vote, and tallied the results. Pumpkin and Apple Pie tied and Apple Cider was the drink of choice.   Students reflected on the power of participation in government and its influence on the results of their election.

Overall this powerful unit got students thinking about and acting about how citizens participate in systems of government. They took action by talking about the unit with parents at home.

Parent comment: “Hello teachers, I usually stay silent as a parent of my daughter but when I read that you will be acting like a dictator, I wanted you to know that I LOVE this idea. Also love how you’re thinking out of the box to teach our smart kids. It will get all of the kids’ attention quickly and it’s important for them to understand the importance of different governments around the world. Keep up the good work and we’re grateful to have you as my daughter’s teacher.”

Parent comment“My son was very moved by the day teachers acted like a dictator. This made a big impression on him which I believe will be lasting. We feel glad teachers were so open and vulnerable with the class about their experience living in Venezuela and the structure of government there.”

Student comment: “We think that the teachers acted as dictators because they lived in a dictatorship and because they wanted us to understand the things they went through and understand how lucky we are to live in democracy. From all this we learned that we do not want to live in a dictatorship.”

Student action: One student took action when the family visited Washington, D.C. to go to the museum to see the original US Constitution, Human Rights and Declarations of Independence. When she returned to school she shared with the class what she saw.