Last week we unveiled our new MYP teacher lounge where teachers can plan collaboratively and take time to disconnect from the busy work day. Inspired by the googleplex (albeit on a much smaller level!), we wanted to create a space that was professional and where our teachers could unwind. Check out Mr. Feng and Ms. Wynn enjoying the new space!
This week students completed the MAP assessment, which will provide our teachers with important data as to their academic skills and current strengths. We are looking forward to using this data to guide instruction in the weeks ahead. You should expect to receive your student's score report as well as a more detailed description of MAP in the next two weeks.
In addition to MAP, our students were actively engaged in learning across the disciplines this week. Dr. Mason, our coaches and I had the privilege of observing all of our MYP classrooms, where students were using their laptops in a variety of different ways to enhance their learning. The laptops allowed our students to engage in an interactive online quiz in one classroom to facilitating a series of problem solving exercises via the Pearson platform in another. As we debriefed and discussed our observations, all of us were excited about the increased student engagement and the positive impact the computers have had thus far. We are excited to see the continued benefits of our one-to-one initiative as the year unfolds!
8th grade parents: For those of you who missed this week's 8th grade parent night, please don't hesitate to reach out to Ms. Mellick with any questions.
This week ends the first official full week of school. We are thrilled to have the hallways full of eager students and teachers actively engaged with teaching and learning. Our administrative team has spent this past week supporting teachers in the establishment of daily routines, meeting with new and returning students and preparing for the year ahead.
Thanks to all of our parents who came to Curriculum Night to meet our team of amazing teachers and learn more about the exciting initiatives we have in store. As many of you know, we have begun rolling out student chrome books as part of our one-to-one curriculum. All students will be equipped with a laptop to use throughout the day. This initiative coincides with the implementation of our new Pearson curriculum, which you will learn more about as the year progresses.
Next week, teachers will begin administering the MAP assessment in Reading, Math and Science to determine baseline student proficiency. Teachers will use this as a data point to gain a sense of each student's strengths and weaknesses. If you have questions about MAP or anything else, please don't hesitate to contact us.
We are excited for a fulfilling year of teaching, learning and growing at Wesley!
It's hard to believe that the summer is over and the halls will be filled with students in less than 48 hours. We look forward to seeing everyone shortly!
This year, we have several new initiatives. As many of you have heard, all of our MYP students will be equipped with a computer for use during the day and at home. Our one-to-one initiative is designed to support student learning both at school and at a home and offers a seamless integration with our Pearson curriculum. Please note that students will be required to pay an MYP technology fee, in order to take their computer home.
In addition, this year all students will participate in an enrichment block called A.C.E. (Academic and Character Enrichment). Each day students will engage in a community gathering with their homeroom teacher, which focuses on fostering community within the classroom. After the community gathering students will work on enrichment activities in a different subject each day of the week. The program is modeled after last year's weekly advisory program and has been modified to support enrichment on a daily basis.
We will be using this blog and website to post updates and keep parents informed of the latest news in MYP. If you have questions, please don't hesitate to reach out to us directly.
Dr. Mason and Dr. Pullen
He thought he wanted to be a sports reporter when he grew up. But when he started working as a summer camp counselor during college, Dr. Donald Mason discovered how much he enjoyed working with kids. Those summers at camp sparked his interest and a future career in education.
Mason got his start as a paraprofessional and continued to grow and advance as an educator. He taught high school Language Arts and eventually became an Assistant Principal in DeKalb County. He then grew into the Principal role. Last year, he took on leadership for Wesley’s MYP program.
“I was interested in the charter model,” says Mason. “And I believe Wesley offers an incredible opportunity for students to learn Mandarin in a globally-minded, IB school environment.”
Mason has demonstrated his own love of learning and teaching as he pursued his education at the doctorate level at the University of Alabama. He currently teaches in the educational leadership program at the University of Georgia.
When he’s not in a school, Mason says he enjoys watching sports. He’s an avid Atlanta fan at the pro level and cheers for the University of North Carolina in collegiate sports. He also enjoyed cycling and walking.
We’re so glad to have Dr. Mason on our leadership team, and we admire his commitment and admiration of our MYP students. “Middle schoolers keep you on your toes,” Mason says. “You never know what you’re going to encounter, and I like that!”
The Middle Years Programme (MYP) is designed for students aged 11-16. It provides a framework of learning that encourages students to become creative, critical and reflective thinkers. The MYP emphasizes intellectual challenge, encouraging students to make connections between their studies in traditional subjects and the real world. It fosters the development of skills for communication, intercultural understanding, and global engagement - essential qualities for young people who are becoming global leaders.
~ Dr. Mason