New Program Initiatives
As we continue to distinguish Parker as a leader in globally focused education and student leadership we will be refining and expanding several programs at Parker next year.
Spanish — Spanish teacher, Erin Wallace will be expanding the Spanish program in several ways.
- She will be spending more time speaking, singing and interacting in the preschool next year, helping our littlest students gain an ear for the sounds of the Spanish language during a time when their brains are most malleable.
- She will also reach out to Spanish speakers in the Parker community as guests. Please let Erin know if you or someone you know would be interested in being a visiting Spanish speaker! (email)
- In 4-5, Erin will expand weekly periods of Spanish from two to three.
- She will be coordinating offering a February Break trip to St. Peter’s School in Barcelona for Parker middle school students.
- Erin is also planning a series of Spanish speaking lunches and other ways to make Spanish language and speaking an even bigger part of Parker students’ experience.
Leadership and Social/Emotional Development — Parker middle school students have many opportunities to develop socially and to practice leadership: as MC’s of assembly, speakers for hunger awareness events, team-building on the ropes course, and advocates for causes. Designing an even more intentional program for fostering specific leadership skills, Parker teachers took ideas from education neuroscientist Dr. JoAnn Deak, the Responsive Classroom, and the Institute for Global Ethics to plan special features for next year’s middle school program.
- Walk and Talk: from 8:30 – 8:45 AM daily, middle school students will briskly walk while chatting with friends on the field or in the gym, allowing for social time while waking up the brain.
- CPR: weekly meetings focused on the Circle of Power and Respect will give students an inclusive start to the school day during advisory.
- Ethical Decision Making: students will practice weighing ethical dilemmas and defining shared values with lessons from the Institute for Global Ethics during weekly grade level meetings.
Sports — With a small middle school, building a successful sports program needs some special considerations. Next year we will try out a few changes to build our program.
- Grades 5 – 8 sports will focus on soccer in the fall with the addition of Assistant Coach, Tamara DeMartino (parent of Marissa 4-5)
- We are working to develop a Parker Ski Team
- We will continue to host a middle school cross country meet in the fall and the 5K Trail Run in the spring, and plan more opportunities for running on our trails.