Fall NWEA MAP Scores Are Online

Educators and parents are looking for reliable information they can use to improve every student's learning and growth. NWEA MAP results are one of those measures that could be utilized to further our students' mastery.

Concept Schools has been using NWEA as a universal screener for a couple of years now. As we announced in our last newsletter, Concept Schools gained the highest improvement last year in a comparison to the last 3 years. The fall NWEA testing window is closed and we have all data available in ConceptSIS.

We have included national percentile data to the individual scores page and will be adding grade-level equivalency pretty soon. 
September History Heroes

The Concept program History Heroes is designed to promote success in and out of the classroom. We want to recognize students acting as civics leaders in their communities or schools, and students who are going above and beyond in their Social Studies classrooms.

The winners for the month of September are: Alfonso Torcuator from Michigan Math and Science Academy, Serenity Richer from Dayton Elementary, Justin Collins from Gateway Science Academy Fyler, and Mariana Perez from Chicago Math and Science Academy. For more information about our winners please visit the History Heroes webpage.



Intro to Robotics by GSA St. Louis
School board members, college representatives, and members of the Charter Schools Association visited Gateway Science Academy's Robotics class and talked with students. The students demonstrated how the new Android-based robotics system works and explained to the guests what they learn by participating in First Tech Challenge Robotics.
Gear Up for STEMCON Student Events

Will the next generation of science, technology, engineering, and math, please STEP UP!

It is great to announce that CONSEF, STEM EXPO, and ROBOCON competitions will be held on April 9, 2016 at the Cleveland Convention Center. The Concept Science and Engineering Fair and STEM Expo draw students from the Midwest and from all types of schools and educational settings. Students create wonderful projects and displays on a wide range of topics from zoology to computer science.

You can register your school at
http://reg.consef.org/Login and manage the students' applications from your school account .
Stay Calm and Spell On
Registrations and submissions are active for both the Concept Schools' Spelling Bee and Writing Competition.

The Spelling Bee is set for Saturday, December 12, 2015 in Chicago.

The window for submitting pieces for the Writing Competition began on October 1, 2015 and remains open until January 29, 2016.

We look forward to your spirited competition and stellar work!  Registration is open for both events on the Upper Elementary Education department website.
Class of 2016 Began to Roar Already... 
2 Full Rides to University of Michigan

Alex Hardwell and Quintin Andrews, two seniors at Michigan Math and Science Academy, both received full-ride scholarships to the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor, worth $100,000 for a 4-year education.

The University of Michigan-Ann Arbor is ranked #29 among national universities. Concept Schools congratulates Alex and Quintin and thanks their parents, teachers, counselors, and school administrators.
Hispanic Heritage Celebrated Throughout the Network  

Schools throughout the Concept network celebrated National Hispanic Heritage Month with a variety of impressive themed activities and events.
    
A prominent Latino Alderman of Chicago, Ariel Reboyras at CMSA, where he also spoke to the students 

HSA Toledo High School
invited parents, students, and teachers to an evening gala on October 16, where attendees enjoyed Latino food and drinks and watched live Latino music and dances.
 
At IMSA North School, the students worked on a project about prominent Hispanic figures in history and today who has made a special impact. A gala is planned for the end of October with the assistance of the school's Latin American Culture Club.
    
At CMSA, Spanish teachers designed a series of special projects for the month, including student presentations about notable Hispanic Americans, piñata making, art projects based on the novel The House on Mango Street by Sandra Cisneros, and a Hispanic folkloric dance. All projects were displayed at CMSA's International Festival on October 8. 
 
GSA Fyler studen ts are studying the Chicano Civil rights movement and the life of Caesar Chavez.
 
Michigan Math and Science Academy students designed a huge Aztec calendar as a school project to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month. 
MathCON Is Here...Bigger and Better in '16

MathCON is more than just a test; it's an opportunity for great minds to come together and compete through the art of numbers. In such a short time MathCON has grown into one of the biggest math competitions in the country with more than 45,000 online contestants last year!
 
The online testing will take place January 25 - March 4, 2016. From there, the top 500 students will travel to Chicago to take the final at the UIC Forum on April 23, 2016. It will be a full-day event including the test, games, a guest speaker and awards for the MathCON Champions. Register at  www.mathcon.org.
Loads of Literacy

The students at Michigan Math and Science Academy are immersed in literacy in all parts of their day. The first grade students recently completed a story map using the book The Legend of the Indian Paintbrush by Tomie de Paola. The story was also tied to the interdisciplinary unit on Inquiry, particularly in learning about America's early history and Native Americans.
 
Kindergarten, first, and second grade students are learning how to decode and spell words using a program called EBLI (Evidence Based Literacy Instruction). Even as early as beginning Kindergarten, students are learning how sounds compose words and then how to apply that knowledge to writing/spelling words.

Students in second grade learned how creating a brochure ties into their writing standards. During their interdisciplinary unit time, these second graders used information from their research on their community to develop a "travel guide" for the city of Detroit. The teachers at Michigan Math and Science Academy do a terrific job of embedding literacy instruction throughout the entire school day!
Celebrating Teacher Initiatives at Concept English

We have been hearing wonderful things about our teachers going above and beyond their daily responsibilities to bring positive attention to our schools and communities. Our first initiative comes from Horizon Columbus High School.

This year at Columbus High School, under the guidance of the English Department Chair Mr. Poulson, teachers and students have begun a Book of the Month Club. Their first meeting took place on Tuesday, September 29th. Mr. Poulson chose the book Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children.

In October, Ms. Mulroy has chosen The Book Thief, and, in November, Mrs. Lucas has chosen Blink. The discussions will be held the last Tuesday of each month after school. Mrs. Magner, Instructional Coordinator, said, "Students can earn a dress down pass and points for English class by attending and participating in our new book club. Several students have already mentioned they are reading and will attend!"
 
Nine students participated in the first Book Club, even though some were unable to attend the after-school meeting. Mr. Poulson said, "It is great to see students talking about reading outside of what is required for class. I love hearing our students encourage their friends to read the book of the month, and seeing them engage in academic conversations about stories that are interesting to them."  
On a recent visit to HSA Springfield we saw Ms. Brown engaging her students in some excellent writing instruction, and at HSA  we earned about an innovative way that Mr. McClellan is having his students report the school news. Click here  to see an example of their news reporting.  
 
For more information on school visits, photos,resources, and other news do not forget to check out the Concept English department website
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Concept Schools | (847) 824-3380 | gabela@conceptschools.org | 2250 E. Devon Ave.
Des Plaines, IL 60018