Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Students Participate in KIPP and YES Prep Summer Sessions

New and returning Rockets gather on the opening day of
YES Prep Northbrook's summer session
For the incoming YES Prep Northbrook 6th graders, yesterday marked the end of their summer session. The Rockets have spent the last days in YES' summer session to prepare them for the start of the 2013-2014 school year.

The session kicked off last Tuesday, when all students anxiously filled the Northbrook Middle School cafeteria to meet their school leaders and staff. The orientation is designed to introduce the new students to the YES Prep culture and to reinforce the cultural standards and expectations to all returning students.

YES Prep Northbrook School Director Cendie Stanford says that "onboarding new Rockets allows both students and teachers an opportunity to learn about the school culture, make new connections, and identify ways their behaviors will help make their school a wonderful place to be from day one. Students learn about the importance of family, systems, and how they can be successful and who around them will help make this possible."
New KIPPsters checking in on
their first day of KIPPnitizing

KIPP Courage, which hosted their summer session in June, welcomed all new and returning KIPPsters for a week of programming often referred to as "KIPPnitizing." Sessions included introducing new KIPPsters to the KIPP Courage characters values, such as self-control, social intelligence and gratitude. Students learned about their Character Growth Cards, which hold them accountable for positively demonstrating and understanding the values on a 9 week cycle.

KIPPsters also learned new chants, oftentimes a hallmark of the KIPP culture. In one session, students filled the Landrum Middle School cafeteria and learned the words to "Write Baby Write." They clapped their hands to keep the beat while they chanted about the importance of literacy, proclaiming, "Now I have made the choice to change the world with my voice!"

For both KIPP and YES Prep, the summer session is a way to introduce students with the expectations around their culture of high-expectations and no excuses. Students are reminded about the importance of not only working hard, but of being nice. Particular emphasis is put on the importance of being a contributing member of their positive team culture, and the benefits that are associated with doing the right thing. After all, hard work and focused efforts deserve rewards. More on that in our next post...

Watch a video of the KIPPsters practicing "Write Baby Write" below:

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