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Ann Arbor teachers are discovering that “there’s an app for that” thanks to a technology initiative that distributed 700 iPod Touches this semester for classroom use. “They’re excited about learning things in different ways,” said Pattengill Elementary third-grade teacher Dawn Blair. “They’re walking right in and ready to go. It gives them some independence and a sense of responsibility.”

Carpenter pupils love their state

April 12, 2010 // 0 Comments

Carpenter Elementary School third-graders love their state and they show it through their “Michigan Concert.” Favorite people (Bo Schembechler, among others) were featured, as well as descriptions of favorite Great Lakes including the story of the Edmund Fitzgerald.

The University Musical Society is singing the praises of Burns Park Elementary School, which was recently selected as the UMS School of the Year for its rich history in fine arts and music.

Geologist and Bach Elementary fourth-grade teacher Robin Frisch-Gleason continues to share lessons learned from a 2007 trip to Antarctica. A student climate summit is planned for April involving eight teachers from the Ann Arbor Public Schools.

Eberwhite Elementary School teachers are taking turns this year tutoring at the nearby Parkhurst Apartments, where they assist students with lessons as well as homework. The program, which takes place after school on Tuesdays and Thursdays, expands the school’s community outreach, which has also included a lending library at the apartments.

A student-run program designed to resolve conflict among peers has expanded in Ann Arbor. Peers Making Peace was first adopted at Pioneer High School and has now moved into Skyline, Stone and Clemente high schools as well as Slauson Middle School. “I think it’s a terrific program,” said Slauson Principal Chris Curtis. “I’m very supportive of it. It empowers the students.”

Since 1988, Pioneer High School’s Positive Peer Influence group has helped other students with challenges in and out of school that may interfere with their academic achievement. Students not only work with their peers, but also help to select those who will take the class.

Two clinics housed in The Ann Arbor Public Schools serve a variety of eastside students and their families for preventative care as well as illness and injuries. The clinics at Scarlett Middle School and Stone High School are open during regular school hours and are run by the University of Michigan Regional Alliance for Healthy Schools.

Innovation at Skyline High begins in the classroom

February 15, 2010 // 0 Comments

Skyline High School continues its unique approach. Ann Arbor’s newest high school is now operating in its second year with magnet programs and a mastery approach to learning. It will have students of all grade levels attending by 2011.

A 3-year-old bald eagle that lives at the Leslie Science and Nature Center has been adopted as a mascot by Skyline High School. The raptor has visited the school several times for assemblies and other activities.

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