Nationwide many schools these days SAY that they are about all arts integration, STEAM integration, multiple intelligences, teaching perseverance, you name it.
But when the chips are down, they fall back on the old drill-and-kill and the arts do not truly live and breathe there. Not so at Piedmont!
Even as good as we are though, our own Encore team does not get enough props for the ways they enrich our school. An event like last night's Prism really brings home how much arts and elective teachers enrich our students' (and our) lives with their subjects.
Behind the scenes and off stage, they are in there day in and day out teaching our kids the lessons that will stay with them long after our students have forgotten the material on this years EOG's.
For example, I was just in Ms. Marshall's Health classroom and she was showing her students how to fail.
In case you don't understand how that's a good thing, click the jewel prism heart to watch the video she showed. Got it? If that's not enough, she also mentioned that she's teaching the kids in health how to look at it when someone talks bad about them. "That's a good thing, don't let it bother you. Now you know what kind of person they are." She actuallly said it a lot better than that. What she has is a gift. My self esteem strengthened just being in her classroom!
To see Ms. Czeriwinski's students live painting to the expertly disciplined and melodic strains of Mr. Forbis' band last night was awe-inspiring. I'd never seen anything like it in a k12 performance before. To watch Ms. Macleod and Ms. Winegardner running around pre-event and rehearsal for drama and orchestra when the day is over for the rest of us is likewise humbling. New level of appreciation reached!
Thank you all and here are a few photos that cannot do the beauty of your work justice:
It is only Monday and I've already walked past so many exciting Piedmont this one school day, it needed its own post.
The first event I encountered this morning was book fair! Not only is book fair a chance for students to find interesting books about topics they care about, it also allows them to experience a little consumer culture for a good cause in the process! We're so glad Miss Newburger is back to help foster the love of reading and get our scholars interested and all the great reading material that is out there.
Thanks also to our dedicated parents who not only volunteered their time for this important fundraiser and student service, they also brought donuts!
Today was also the final club day of the school year. Throughout the hallways and classroom students were practicing their spoken word poems, playing sports and celebrating the culmination of choice based learning. Below is a photo of some great free creations from the final meeting of Miss Gorman and Suckstorff's K'NEX club
Our kids are certainly creative and at a time in education when that is being put on the back burner in the service of testing preparation, it's refreshing to see such life in their activities and vivacious learning in their school day.
Speaking of creativity,I caught a few of the science Olympiad temmembers on their way back to class from morning TV announcements after showing off their medals. This photo captures their creativity and zeal even as they move to national competiton for their serious smarts.
Finally, on my way out the door this afternoon I noticed that the cultural arts teachers and students were still hard at work. I heard really great band music coming from the auditorium so I stopped in to listen a moment and was taken by how disciplined the band sounded and performed under Mr. Forbis' direction.
And that is just one snapshot of one day in the life of Piedmont. Thank you, Piedmont, again for putting your all into what we we do.
The official announcement of our teams winning two state championships in one day:
"Our Science Olympiad team won the state championship title this past Saturday in Raleigh! We are so proud of all of our students, Mr. Clark, our head coach, and all the coaches for all of their hard work and dedication. They will be heading to the national championship in a few short weeks, and we wish them the best of luck. Also, congratulations go out to Mr. Reddig and students Breana Clinkscales, Sheila Garcia-Garcia, Logan Long, and DJ McClettie. They placed first in the National History Day state championship and will also be heading to a national competition. What a great weekend for Piedmont!"
- Principal Barone
As the news of us winning two academic state championships in the same day rolls in*, it's pretty amazing to remember that by all accounts Piedmont should not be as good as we are.
We should not be the best in both sports and academics, and we should definitely not also be relaxed and fun! We are an urban high poverty school. We do not have all the resources we need. We are just about out of paper, for goodness sakes! The data, the world says our kids should not be as brilliant as they are. We should be sad demoralized teachers and although we are not in paradise, we are in a dream school as you can see in the joyful faces of learning throughout the other Celebrating Piedmont posts.
Thanks to you- Piedmont's students, parents, administrators, support staff and teachers, we are a dream come true! I think it's our heart and our curiosity combined with our pride and diligent work ethic. Plus a hefty dose of rebellious spirit sprinkled throughout a very very diverse community that not only respects but admires, celebrates and cultivates each others diversity of gifts: of culture, of thought and of style. There have been a lot of amazing teachers and students to pass through Piedmont. They have left their mark because we are the kind of school that allows and welcomes mark-leaving. I am so proud of us! So when I say congratulations to the state champion History Day team led by Mr. Reddig and to the State Champion Science Olympiad team headed by Mr. Clark, I am also saying congrats to all of us for creating a place that should not exist on paper but we made it exist in real life. Maybe because we're almost out of paper!
Celebrating Piedmont : a blog of Happy Happenings
"Celebrating Piedmont" logs only a small fraction of the learning magic the teachers of CMS' Piedmont Middle School, an IB World School. create daily. In that sense, it is authored by all the staff and students of Piedmont. It is curated by Ms. Gurthie who can be reached at the icons above. She'll be happy to brag about Piedmont's teachers and students any chance she gets! Please note this blog has only just begun and we have so much to show off! Come back again soon!