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2019 Minnesota Promising Practices Award Program

2019 Minnesota Promising Practices Awards
Avalon School — St. Paul
Macalester College Roundtable
Avalon School partners with Macalester College to learn about and participate in the college’s annual International Roundtable. To prepare for the Roundtable, students attend a seminar three times a week for the quarter prior to the event. Preparation includes learning more about the Roundtable theme, touring the college campus, discussion with Macalester students, and attending a college lecture. Students gain confidence in discussing challenging topics, learn about college and develop communication skills.
Contact: Mr. Kevin Ward,
Principle(s): 6
Topics: Academics, Student Autonomy Empowerment

Community of Peace Academy — St. Paul
Junior Class Days of Service
Community of Peace Academy's junior class spends three days rotating between volunteering with Habitat for Humanity and doing service projects in collaboration with elementary grade levels. The goals of the practice are to inspire service in elementary students, expose juniors to a variety of service opportunities so they will continue volunteering into adulthood, develop leadership skills in the junior class, build relationships among elementary and high school students, and support those in need in the community.
Contact: Ms. Sadie Fischer,
Principle(s): 5
Topics: Service to Community/Service Learning

Hennepin Gateway to College — Eden Prairie
Gardening Project-Based Learning
Through an on-campus garden, students work cooperatively to beautify the campus, learn the science behind gardening and produce food that can be shared with everyone. The practice instills pride and ownership in the students, builds community, increases collaboration and autonomy in and between students, and engages students in mastering the state’s learning standards.
Contact: Mr. Joe Millard,
Principle(s): 6, 7
Topics: Assessment, Curriculum

Henry Sibley High School — Mendota Heights
Warrior Seminar
Warrior Seminar is a course to support freshman students in the transition to high school, provide opportunities for career and college exploration, and build social skills. Ideas from the Warrior PRIDE framework (Preparation, Respect, Integrity, Determination, Excellence) are interwoven with lessons and activities from a character development curriculum that helps students better understand habits that shape their behavior. Teachers, community mentors, guest speakers, and upper class students provide guidance and knowledge for freshman to evaluate themselves and find their drive in high school and beyond.
Contact: Mr. Benjamin Geiger,
Principle(s): 3, 10
Topics: Community Members, Workshops/Classes/Discussion Group

Lakes International Language Academy — Forest Lake
LILA Rocks!: Inclusivity Rock Garden – A Community Project
Each student in grades K–5 paint a stone in a way that represents themself as a unique and special member of the LILA community, Forest Lake community, the United States and the world. The rocks are placed in a path leading to the school’s entrance as a daily reminder and symbolic display of the school’s sense of community and core values in a way that can be easily seen, understood and discussed by all students, staff and visitors. Prior to painting the rocks, students learn about community, collaboration, inclusivity, diversity, and what makes each person unique and special.
Contact: Tracy Maurer,
Principle(s): 2, 4
Topics: Core Values: Teaching, Learning or Visual Display, Social Issues/Diversity/Tolerance

Red Lake Early Childhood Center — Red Lake
Begindergarten provides students with a safe and welcoming environment during their first experience with school to ensure a successful start for everyone. An altered schedule is combined with small-group activities that provide teachers with significant information about each student's current academic and social-emotional functioning while introducing every student to all of the adults in the building. Routines and expectations are modeled, taught and re-taught until all students are successful.
Contact: Dustin Hinckley,
Principle(s): 4
Topics: Orientations/Welcoming

Red Lake Elementary Complex — Red Lake
First Six Weeks
Traditional Anishinaabe/Ojibwe values are integrated with Responsive Classroom's First Six Weeks of School to create culturally responsive lessons that emphasize character traits and develop social-emotional skills. All teachers are provided lesson plans targeted to their grade level and content area/specialty as an initial guide.
Contact: Dustin Hinckley,
Principle(s): 1
Topics: Core Values: Teaching, Learning or Visual Display

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