What did you learn in school today? DSUSD students can tell you.
We all remember that question at the end of a day: What did you learn in school today? On most days the answer was a shrug or a vague reply. Students who attend Indio Middle School have some interesting lessons to share especially at the completion of each two-week Enrichments.
The school has a daily Tutorial Time that is embedded in the bell schedule. Sessions last for 30 minutes on four days per week. Tutorial is designated time where students are able to receive targeted academic interventions and skills to demonstrate growth in the areas of reading, math, and overall academic achievement. Tutorials run in three week sessions for reading and then three week sessions for math. Students in all grades, 4th-6th, are strategically placed in these tutorial sessions based on their targeted academic need and are provided with lessons that are strategically designed to help them show academic growth.
At the completion of a six week reading and math Tutorial, all students participate in the Enrichments that run for two weeks. The opportunities provide students with creative means to explore passions and use critical thinking skills. The October Enrichments included Halloween set design, scary stories and film, Halloween make-up, ceramics, sports, knitting/crocheting, and Dia De Los Muertos altar creation (just in time for the Day of the Dead celebration). This Enrichment included discussions on the history of the day and its importance to a number of Latino cultures. In addition there were STEM-based (science, technology, engineering, math) activities.
The biggest STEM-based activity involved students creating a device that would allow an egg to survive a fall. Students tested their egg devices, made adjustments, and dropped their final devices with the assistance of our local fire department from the top of a 100 foot ladder.
There were eight classrooms submitting multiple entries in the competition. Devices were created using materials such as bubble wrap – lots of bubble wrap; heavy cardboard; straws; and plastic bags that many used as parachutes. Three classes took home the prize. Ms. Arechiga-Sandoval’s 7th grade class had six unbroken eggs; Ms. Sanchez’s 7th grade class had six unbroken eggs; and Ms. Skogen’s 8th grade class had five unbroken eggs.
The 58 students in these three classes will be recognized at an upcoming Desert Sands Unified School District school board meeting where they will receive certificates of accomplishment for their creative hard work.
Tutorial returned on Monday morning, Nov. 1. In six weeks new Enrichments are planned.
So, what did you do in school today?
Editor’s note: This article was authored by both Elizabeth Del Campo Harman, Indio Middle School principal, and Mary Perry, public information officer
- In position: DSUSD