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MAP Testing – Finish Strong!

Finish

We are on the home stretch for the end of the school year with this final week to finish strong! Congratulations to all our iLEAD learners who have completed their Growth MAP assessments in both subjects of math and reading. Be encouraged as you review your child’s MAP results, and consider this information as a tool to start your curriculum planning for the fall. Please speak with your EF and determine ways that you can best support your learner and identify areas of growth that you can celebrate!

Summer Credit Options

Summer1

If you have struggled this year and need to recover credits or are simply looking to get ahead, earning credits over the summer can be a very good option. Many of our learners participate with iLEAD Online for the summer, but their seats are full, and learners are now being placed on a waitlist. There are some great paid options still available that include:

If you believe summer credit is a good fit for you, but you need additional guidance on course selection or other questions, please reach out right away to your academic counselor.

A-K: Bethany Maddox, bethany.maddox@ileadexploration.org, Schedule an appointment

L-Z: Heather Fecarotta, heather.fecarotta@ileadexploration.org, Schedule an appointment

CTE (Career Technical Education)

Career Technical Education

Are you still looking for an elective for next school year? Career Technical Education (CTE) is a great opportunity to expand your knowledge in a given career field and explore new career options. Career Technical Education is a program of study that involves a multi-year sequence of courses covering technical and occupational knowledge. The goal is to provide learners with a pathway to postsecondary education and/or career. You can think of this as a way for learners to “major” while in high school and focus on elective courses of specific occupational interest. iLEAD Exploration is offering the following Career Pathways:

  • Public Service Pathway
    • For those interested in corrections, law enforcement, loss prevention, military service, paralegal, court reporter, or lawyer
    • Includes courses in criminal justice, forensic investigations, and mock trial
  • Child Development Pathway
    • For those interested in careers as a child care worker, child psychologist, or family service advocate
    • Includes courses in child development and social sciences
  • Entrepreneurship and Business Pathway
    • For those interested in careers in business ownership, business, and accounting
    • Includes courses in entrepreneurship and business math
  • Patient Care Pathway
    • For those interested in any area of the medical field
    • Includes courses in medical terminology, anatomy and physiology, and microbiology
  • Animation Pathway
    • For those interested in careers as a digital animator, artistic director, commercial artist, animator, or graphic/digital artist
    • Includes courses in animation, illustration, cartooning, and advanced art
  • Photography Pathway
    • For those interested in a career as a photographer
    • Includes a sequence of courses in digital photography and advanced techniques

To complete a CTE Pathway, learners need to choose a pathway, identify a career within that pathway, and then complete a 3-year sequence of courses. Talk with your EF about adding a CTE pathway to your courses for the coming school year.

Don’t see a career of interest above? That’s okay! There are many CTE opportunities available through your local community college. These programs offer state-of-the-art equipment and accredited certificates that can lead directly to a career. Bonus: You can also earn college units while working towards your career of interest! A simple search for CTE + the college name will bring up a listing of all their CTE Pathways. If you are interested, contact the Strong Workforce Counselor at your local community college.

For more information or assistance reach out to us directly at cte@ileadexploration.org.

College Essay Guy

Untitled (1)

Rising Seniors, Class of 2022, it is time to start your college application journey! Summer is the perfect time to work on your essays before the hectic application deadlines during the fall semester.

iLEAD is partnering with College Essay Guy to make these valuable workshops available FREE to iLEAD learners:

  • The Personal Statement: This workshop is for the main college essay. It can be used for the Common Application (the application used by 1000 colleges), scholarship essays, honors programs, and individual college applications.

  • The Supplemental Essay: Often individual colleges require supplemental essays. They can get overwhelming as each college asks a different question or even multiple questions. College Essay Guy will be having two weekend crash courses to prepare for these essays.

  • The University of California Personal Insight Questions (PIQs): Our UC system has its own set of questions. The College Essay Guy has a weekend crash course and a three-week course in October.

View the dates and sign up here!

By registering for one of these courses, you will receive access to the College Essay Guy’s new Choose Your Own Adventure Essay Tool. This is an online program that walks you through the entire essay process from brainstorming, to choosing your essay format, to completion. This program will be yours to use throughout the entire application season.

Some applications are due as early as November 1, so don’t delay! Take advantage of these live essay boot camps, crash courses, and the essay builder tool. Once you get started, make an appointment with our College Advisor, Laura Kazan, to go over your essays and put on the final touches.

FAFSA

FAFSA

The FAFSA, or the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, is the form that learners and parents fill out to receive financial aid for postsecondary education. This can include four-year colleges, community colleges, and trade schools. In most cases, the learner AND parent will need to fill out the FAFSA. Each will supply their own information. For divorced, widowed, and non-traditional family situations, this graphic can help you decide which family member should be included in the FAFSA and which parent will need to provide information.

The FAFSA opens on October 1, 2021. It should be filled out as soon as possible. For learners heading to a four-year college, the FAFSA deadline can vary by college so be sure to check the deadline on each college website. For students attending a public college in California (the University of California, the California state system, or a California community college) the final deadline for maximum financial aid is March 2, 2022. Do not wait until the last minute as some colleges award aid on a first-come, first-serve basis. Here are some helpful resources to explain FAFSA:

  • How to fill out the FAFSA: This video explains the necessary documents, information, and steps required to fill out the FAFSA. Information and documentation include your social security, your taxes, and W2. You will also need your permanent resident card if applicable.
  • How to create an account for the FAFSA: This video explains the steps to create an ID for both students and parents. The student and the parent must each create their own account. A Federal Student Aid (FSA) ID is necessary to log in and complete the FAFSA.
  • Information for parents filling out the FAFSA: This video explains the parent portion for filling out the FAFSA for dependent students. This video explains the difference between a dependent and independent student and will help you determine your dependency status.
  • FAFSA YouTube channel: This provides numerous videos to help explain financial aid in general including filling out the FAFSA, tips for parents, and understanding loans.

The California Dream Act allows undocumented California learners to apply for financial aid for California state colleges. This video explains more about CADAA.

Eligible learners who file the CADAA may receive grants for University of California schools (examples: UCLA, UC Irvine), the California State University system (examples CSU Long Beach and San Diego State University), and the community college system.

Check here to see if you qualify under the California Dream Act or AB 540.

Questions?

Get more information about the FAFSA

Get more information about the CADAA

If you have any questions about the FAFSA, the CADAA, or financial aid in general please contact iLEAD Exploration’s College Advisor, Laura Kazan, at laura.kazan@ileadexploration.org.

Mental Health Awareness Month

water

On this second week of Mental Health Awareness month, we would like to draw your attention to a lesser-known contributor to mental wellness: hydration.

Did you know that dehydration, or the absence of water/fluids, can quickly affect how you feel and think? Dehydration can manifest in the form of headaches, mood swings or other mental processing challenges.

Every system and organ in your body, including your brain, relies on water to function. In fact, your brain makeup is about 75% water. Your mental health is primarily influenced by your brain’s activity and functioning. A 2012 study from the University of Connecticut’s Human Performance Laboratory showed that a 1.5% loss in water volume in your body can significantly alter your energy level, ability to think clearly, and mood.

When your body and its systems don’t have enough water, they can’t function properly. Below are three common ways dehydration can impact your mental well-being:

1. Dehydration directly affects energy: If you are dehydrated, the energy generation in your brain is impeded, severely affecting your thinking and brain functioning, sometimes even shutting down brain functioning completely.

2. Dehydration can obstruct your brain’s serotonin production. Serotonin is an important neurotransmitter in your brain frequently called “the happy chemical” because it increases feelings of well-being and happiness. The process of creating serotonin requires a great deal of water to complete, and if you aren’t properly hydrated, you may encounter mental health challenges. Dehydration also depletes the levels of other amino acids in your brain, leading to feelings of anxiety, dejection, irritability, and inadequacy.

3. When you don’t drink enough water, your body begins a self-perpetuating cycle of stress and dehydration. Stress is perhaps the best-known contributing factor to depression. When you are stressed, your adrenal glands produce excess cortisol, the stress hormone. However, under chronic stress, your adrenal glands become exhausted and can’t function efficiently. Your adrenal glands also produce aldosterone, a hormone that regulates fluids and electrolyte levels in your body. A decrease in the production of aldosterone leads to dehydration. Drinking enough water can help you lower stress levels which, in turn, alleviates depression symptoms.

Drinking water regularly throughout the day is an effective step to take to care for your mental health. Try starting with a glass of water first thing in the morning and drink two or three glasses between meals. Maybe try carrying a water bottle with you everywhere you go — and don’t forget to pause throughout the day to take a drink.

What’s your daily water plan?

Staying hydrated is just one aspect of maintaining good physical, emotional, and mental health. We are not one-dimensional, so a healthy approach to mental health is personalized and multi-faceted.

Other Resources:

Dehydration and Anxiety: Understanding the Connection

Hydrate for Your Mental Health

How Hydration Improves Mental Health

6 Awesome Jobs That Require a Second Language

Jobs

There’s an increasing demand for bilingual workers. New American Economy reports that the demand for bilingual workers more than doubled between 2010 and 2015. That’s a lot of new jobs that need qualified bilingual (or multilingual) candidates!

According to the Chicago Tribune, foreign language careers are on the rise in a number of fields, including finance, health care, social services, information technology and more. Learning a second language can increase your employability in almost any field you can imagine.

Additionally, bilingual workers often earn more than their monolingual counterparts. AOL Finance reports that bilingual workers earn between 5% and 20% more than the base rate per hour.

1. International Sales Manager: In any sector that produces goods, it is likely there are international sales positions. Many international sales positions focus on B2B “business to business” sales. Businesses often sell their products to other businesses, and while these negotiations are often considered more complex, they can also be tremendously satisfying for a skilled negotiator.

2. Study Abroad Coordinator: These coordinators serve as a university’s go-to person for study-abroad opportunities.

3. Foreign Service Officer: Foreign service officers serve as representatives of their home nation in countries throughout the world. Depending on their career track, they might help Americans abroad, protect American borders, work to negotiate with foreign governments, manage embassy operations, promote mutual understanding and more.

4. International Development Program Officer: International development jobs focus on helping communities across the world. This may involve addressing issues like health, clean water, economic development, energy, the environment and more.

5. Foreign Correspondent: International journalists and foreign correspondents travel throughout the world to cover breaking news stories.

6. Intelligence Operative: Being an intelligence operative doesn’t necessarily involve sneaking into parties to follow shady characters. It might involve field work, but there are also many positions in analysis, STEM and support.

Adapted from “Living the Dream! 6 Awesome Jobs That Require a Second Language.”

May Webinars and Virtual Events

Fall Webinars

We hope that you will join us for our final webinars of the 2020-2021 school year. Please click the links below for all of the details on how to register:

5/18 at 11 a.m.: TK-3rd Grade Virtual Show and Tell

5/19 at 12 p.m.: Presentation by Jonathan Mooney: “Normal Sucks”

Webinars 2021
VirtualEvents_Spring2021

MAP Testing is Underway

MAP

Who better to give advice on test-taking tips than learners themselves? We talked with iLEAD learners to find out about their successful experience taking the growth MAP assessments. Here is a list of test-taking tips for kids by kids:

1. Set a daily goal of questions you want to answer. Try to do 20 questions so you’re not stressed about doing all of them in one day.
2. Enjoy treats if your parent lets you! Chew gum or candy while working on the questions.
3. Take the test when you’re the most focused!
4. Take stretching breaks after a long question.
5. Don’t stress – just try to do your best!

May Webinars and Virtual Events

Fall Webinars

Mark your calendars for our upcoming May activities! Please click the links below for all of the details on how to register:

5/12 at 3 p.m.: Roundtable Discussion About Anxiety

5/13 at 1 p.m.: TK-2 Read Aloud “It Could Have Been Worse”

5/14 at 10 a.m.: Financing College

5/14 at 1 p.m.: End of the Year Bingo

5/18 at 11 a.m.: TK-3rd Grade Virtual Show and Tell

5/19 at 12 p.m.: Presentation by Jonathan Mooney: “Normal Sucks”

Webinars 2021
VirtualEvents_Spring2021

25 Activities to Keep Kids’ Brains Active in Summer

Summer Activities iLEAD Exploration

Here are some awesome summer activities and ideas that will keep your kids engaged this summer. Best of all, they are all really fun! Pick one that looks like a good fit or combine a few of them to create a season packed with learning.

  1. Fill in summer’s special days and events on a calendar. Help children use pencils, drawing paper, and rulers to create, decorate, and fill in their own summer calendars.
  2. Teach kids to cook and bake using recipes and cookbooks, including those from your family history and traditions.
  3. Make homemade bubble solutions and experiment with unique bubble blowing tools like strings, milk containers, and garbage can lids.
  4. Read aloud The Paper Crane by Molly Bang. Then introduce the art of paper folding by printing and following the instructions for how to make an origami crane.
  5. Go on a nature walk.
  6. Create musical instruments from materials found around the house.
  7. Cool down by making ice cream in a bag. The simple technique produces delicious ice cream in about five minutes.
  8. Read aloud your favorite myths or fairy tales. Discuss the stories with your child. Then invite your child to choose a story, and together make a diorama depicting a pivotal moment in the tale.
  9. Catch a firefly and then go online to learn more about fireflies or read a book about them.
  10. Have your child make an original tessellation.
  11. Staple together pieces of plain paper or use a notebook to help your child make a cartoon flip book. Have your children draw a sequence of cartoons and simulate motion as they “flip” through the pages.
  12. Learn about national parks from the comfort of your own home, and encourage your child to complete online activities and become a web ranger.
  13. Start a rock collection. Collect, gather, identify, and store neat rock specimens.
  14. Plan with your child a family activity day. Decide how much money to spend, and help your child research events and activities in your area and choose an affordable activity the whole family can enjoy.
  15. Take a virtual campus tour of colleges and universities your high school student might be considering.
  16. Ask your child to design an original paper airplane and diagram the steps for constructing it so another family member can recreate it!
  17. Start a family or neighborhood book club. Even a parent and child can form a book club by reading the same book and chatting about it.
  18. Hang a white sheet outside at night and shine a light on it. Observe the variety of insects it draws.
  19. Kids rarely have the opportunity to design their own rooms to best suit their individual needs. Invite your child to devote some thought to ways to improve his or her living space.
  20. Help your child make a set of tangrams. Trace the designs on a piece of paper, mix up the tangram pieces, and use them to create jigsaw puzzles.
  21. Create a clue-based scavenger hunt. Write clues and place them in envelopes, then give your child the first clue. As they open the clues, they are practicing their reading skills and ability to follow directions. At the end of the hunt, you can place a small surprise or a fun activity for your child to find.
  22. Turn your favorite book (story or chapter book) into a play. Write a script, have family members take different roles, and even create your own props and backdrops. Record or share it live with family and friends over Zoom.
  23. Turn plain white carnations or fresh-picked Queen Anne’s Lace into dramatic colored creations. Using just food coloring and water, flowers can be changed from white to any tint (usually in just one day).
  24. Invite your child to play a math game and record his or her scores on a sheet of paper. Choose a probability game, a timed flashcard activity, an online game from a site such as FunBrain, or another favorite math activity. Celebrate your child’s effort with a special treat.
  25. Put old wallpaper and magazine scraps to good use by using them to create recycled paper beads. This easy activity requires very few common materials and keeps kids very busy on rainy days. When they’re finished, children can string their beads and give them as gifts or wear them for fun.

This article was adapted from “25 Activities to Keep Kids’ Brains Active in Summer.”

Please visit their website to find links to support all the activities above.

7 Habits – Sharpen the Saw

habits2

Habit 7 is the habit of renewal.

“Sharpening the Saw” is what a lumberjack must do in order to cut wood efficiently and effectively. The same applies to the scissors of the seamstress, the paintbrushes of the painter, and the tools of the craftsman.

To maintain and increase our effectiveness, we must renew ourselves in body, heart, mind, and soul. This improves our capacity, builds stronger relationships, and allows for continuous improvement. Building greater reserves builds the strength we need for those hard moments when we need to show the grit, determination, and patience that are the hallmarks of a strong character.

This week, discuss with your family ways to sharpen your individual saws to renew each family member’s body, heart, mind and/or soul.

6 Benefits of Raising Bilingual Children

Science Kits

INCREASED COGNITIVE ABILITY – In a Time article, Jeffery Kluger says that babies are born with the inherent ability to speak and understand the world’s 6,800 languages. They continue to easily learn multiple languages up into early grammar school. Having gained these language abilities as babies and children, multilingual adults are better at reasoning, at multitasking, at grasping and reconciling conflicting ideas. They work faster and expend less energy doing so, and as they age, they retain their cognitive faculties longer, delaying the onset of dementia and even full-blown Alzheimer’s disease.

MORE FLEXIBLE BRAIN – The ability to balance two separate languages and alternate between the two when the situation dictates requires a certain degree of flexibility. Because bilinguals may acquire two languages in the time in which monolinguals acquire one, they quickly become more flexible learners.

INCREASED LISTENING SKILLS – As children begin to tune their hearing to learn unfamiliar sounds and words in the new language, their listening skills develop. It is somewhat similar to a musician having a trained ear for the sounds of the notes over time.

HIGHER MEMORY RETENTION – As children memorize new words, they are actually helping their brain to be better at memory work in the future. As the brain is stimulated with difficult, new challenges, this boosts the brain’s health, vitality, and increase in memory power.

INCREASED MARKETABILITY IN THE FUTURE WORKPLACE – A study from a Los Angeles-based recruiter found that almost 9 out of 10 headhunters in Europe, Latin America, and Asia reported that bilingual skills are critical for success in today’s business setting. In this increasingly global world, bilingualism carries many benefits. Furthermore, 66 percent of North American recruiters agreed that being bilingual will become increasingly important over the next 10 years.

BETTER PROBLEM-SOLVERS – Language is like a puzzle. Letters and sounds fit together to make words, and then words fit together to make sentences. By fitting the pieces together in a new language, children become naturally more adept at problem-solving abilities.

Adapted from “6 Benefits of Raising Bilingual Children.”

25 Activities to Keep Kids’ Brains Active in Summer

Summer Activities iLEAD Exploration

Here are some awesome summer activities and ideas that will keep your kids engaged this summer. Best of all, they are all really fun! Pick one that looks like a good fit or combine a few of them to create a season packed with learning.

  1. Fill in summer’s special days and events on a calendar. Help children use pencils, drawing paper, and rulers to create, decorate, and fill in their own summer calendars.
  2. Teach kids to cook and bake using recipes and cookbooks, including those from your family history and traditions.
  3. Make homemade bubble solutions and experiment with unique bubble blowing tools like strings, milk containers, and garbage can lids.
  4. Read aloud The Paper Crane by Molly Bang. Then introduce the art of paper folding by printing and following the instructions for how to make an origami crane.
  5. Go on a nature walk.
  6. Create musical instruments from materials found around the house.
  7. Cool down by making ice cream in a bag. The simple technique produces delicious ice cream in about five minutes.
  8. Read aloud your favorite myths or fairy tales. Discuss the stories with your child. Then invite your child to choose a story, and together make a diorama depicting a pivotal moment in the tale.
  9. Catch a firefly and then go online to learn more about fireflies or read a book about them.
  10. Have your child make an original tessellation.
  11. Staple together pieces of plain paper or use a notebook to help your child make a cartoon flip book. Have your children draw a sequence of cartoons and simulate motion as they “flip” through the pages.
  12. Learn about national parks from the comfort of your own home, and encourage your child to complete online activities and become a web ranger.
  13. Start a rock collection. Collect, gather, identify, and store neat rock specimens.
  14. Plan with your child a family activity day. Decide how much money to spend, and help your child research events and activities in your area and choose an affordable activity the whole family can enjoy.
  15. Take a virtual campus tour of colleges and universities your high school student might be considering.
  16. Ask your child to design an original paper airplane and diagram the steps for constructing it so another family member can recreate it!
  17. Start a family or neighborhood book club. Even a parent and child can form a book club by reading the same book and chatting about it.
  18. Hang a white sheet outside at night and shine a light on it. Observe the variety of insects it draws.
  19. Kids rarely have the opportunity to design their own rooms to best suit their individual needs. Invite your child to devote some thought to ways to improve his or her living space.
  20. Help your child make a set of tangrams. Trace the designs on a piece of paper, mix up the tangram pieces, and use them to create jigsaw puzzles.
  21. Create a clue-based scavenger hunt. Write clues and place them in envelopes, then give your child the first clue. As they open the clues, they are practicing their reading skills and ability to follow directions. At the end of the hunt, you can place a small surprise or a fun activity for your child to find.
  22. Turn your favorite book (story or chapter book) into a play. Write a script, have family members take different roles, and even create your own props and backdrops. Record or share it live with family and friends over Zoom.
  23. Turn plain white carnations or fresh-picked Queen Anne’s Lace into dramatic colored creations. Using just food coloring and water, flowers can be changed from white to any tint (usually in just one day).
  24. Invite your child to play a math game and record his or her scores on a sheet of paper. Choose a probability game, a timed flashcard activity, an online game from a site such as FunBrain, or another favorite math activity. Celebrate your child’s effort with a special treat.
  25. Put old wallpaper and magazine scraps to good use by using them to create recycled paper beads. This easy activity requires very few common materials and keeps kids very busy on rainy days. When they’re finished, children can string their beads and give them as gifts or wear them for fun.

This article was adapted from “25 Activities to Keep Kids’ Brains Active in Summer.”

Please visit their website to find links to support all the activities above.

Six Awesome Jobs That Require a Second Language

Jobs

There’s an increasing demand for bilingual workers. New American Economy reports that the demand for bilingual workers more than doubled between 2010 and 2015. That’s a lot of new jobs that need qualified bilingual (or multilingual) candidates!

According to the Chicago Tribune, foreign language careers are on the rise in a number of fields, including finance, health care, social services, information technology and more. Learning a second language can increase your employability in almost any field you can imagine.

Additionally, bilingual workers often earn more than their monolingual counterparts. AOL Finance reports that bilingual workers earn between 5% and 20% more than the base rate per hour.

  1. International Sales Manager: In any sector that produces goods, it is likely there are international sales positions. Many international sales positions focus on B2B “business to business” sales. Businesses often sell their products to other businesses, and while these negotiations are often considered more complex, they can also be tremendously satisfying for a skilled negotiator.
  2. Study Abroad Coordinator: These coordinators serve as a university’s go-to person for study-abroad opportunities.
  3. Foreign Service Officer: Foreign service officers serve as representatives of their home nation in countries throughout the world. Depending on their career track, they might help Americans abroad, protect American borders, work to negotiate with foreign governments, manage embassy operations, promote mutual understanding and more.
  4. International Development Program Officer: International development jobs focus on helping communities across the world. This may involve addressing issues like health, clean water, economic development, energy, the environment and more.
  5. Foreign Correspondent: International journalists and foreign correspondents travel throughout the world to cover breaking news stories.
  6. Intelligence Operative: Being an intelligence operative doesn’t necessarily involve sneaking into parties to follow shady characters. It might involve field work, but there are also many positions in analysis, STEM and support.

Adapted from “Living the Dream! 6 Awesome Jobs That Require a Second Language.”

SLO of the Month: Zest

Welcome back

For the month of May, our Schoolwide Learner Outcome (SLO) is zest. You may be asking yourself, “What is zest, and why is it an important character trait?” Think of zest as more than just a character trait. It is a mindset, or a state of mind, a positive approach to life and new situations. Embracing unfamiliar educational challenges can be difficult, but having a zestful attitude can help our learners push through and gain new insights, allowing them to feel successful. When we invest in zestful practices, we experience gratitude, hope, and love from the inside (Seligman, Steen, Park & Peterson, 2006).

Zest Poster

 

Meet a DreamUp to Space Team Member: Grace Stumpf, Team Adzuki

iLEAD Exploration learner Grace Stumpf collage DreamUp

DreamUp to Space is a project that challenges young people to understand and explore the impact that microgravity has on matter. Through a partnership with DreamUp, iLEAD learners in grades 5-12 are inspired to develop the skills and knowledge to design, develop, and propose an experiment that could be run on the International Space Station.

In July of 2020, two teams from iLEAD Schools were selected for flight in the 2020 DreamUp to Space Virtual Mission & Experiment Design Challenge. Currently, learners from across the network were selected and are now collaborating on these two “Launch Teams” — Team Carrot and Team Adzuki — in preparation for a spring launch of their experiments to the International Space Station.

Each learner has unique interests, strengths, and goals to bring to each team. We’d like to introduce you to our team members! Today we’re introducing Grace Stumpf!

Meet Grace Stumpf, Team Adzuki

Grace Stumpf reading booksGrace Stumpf is a 13-year-old 7th grader at iLEAD Exploration. She enjoys reading, science, and the great outdoors. As a member of the iLEAD DreamUp to Space Launch Team Team Adzuki, she will participate in experimentation optimization in preparation for the upcoming spring 2021 launch.

In the future, Grace would like to be an author of literature for children and middle schoolers. Her favorite book is I Am Malala. Other favorites are The Hunger Games, Keeper of the Lost Cities, and Percy Jackson series.

Grace is also a high-level figure skater. Her other hobbies include flying, painting, and researching Greek mythology.

An interesting fact: Grace was born prematurely at 28 weeks, weighing only two pounds and 12 ounces. She spent 69 days in the NICU. The doctors gave her a 50 percent chance of survival.

We had the chance to ask Grace a few questions!

Q&A with Grace

What is the most exciting thing about this opportunity?

“It’s wonderful to know that I may inspire some other little girl or boy out there to reach for the stars, and that to me is out of this world!”

What is your favorite animal and why?

“My favorite animal is most definitely a wombat because they are just so cute and intelligent. (I also find it very funny that they poop cubes.)”

Who do you look up to?

“I look up to all my teachers. My wonderful English teachers, Mrs. Nancy Kaser and Mrs.Chris MacLeith. My extraordinary history teacher, Mrs. Janiene Bishop. My miracle-worker math teacher, Mrs. Kathleen Crady. My exceptional educational facilitator Mrs. Julie Sato. And last but not least, my awesome science teacher, Mrs. Jill. I would like to thank each one of them for inspiring my love of learning. (And let’s not forget my amazing parents, who homeschool me and let me pursue my passions and read to my heart’s content.)

We look forward to introducing more team members to you soon!

MAP Testing Window Open

MAP Testing

webinars

Three cheers for Measured Academic Progress!!! We are very excited about the recent approval from the US Department of Ed to use our MAP assessments in lieu of CAASPP testing this spring. This is great news, as learners are already comfortable with this testing format and will be able to test in a familiar learning environment. The official testing window will open May 2, 2021. Your educational facilitator will coordinate a time for you to take this assessment during this last full month of school. For more information, watch this introduction video to learn about MAP testing (PowerPoint here). You can also visit NWEA.org/Parent-Toolkit.

Exploring the Military

jet

Joining the military after high school can bring many benefits. In addition to serving your country and learning important life skills, you can receive housing, subsidized food, health care, and an education. Opportunities are available to pursue undergraduate, graduate, and professional degrees through the military. Many colleges and universities have ROTC programs. In exchange for a paid college education and a guaranteed post-college career, cadets commit to serve in the military after graduation. There are many different programs and ways to serve depending on your short-term and long-term career goals. To learn more about the different branches of the military, follow the links below.
. .

Questions About College? Take Our College Explorations Course

building

Next year, Exploration’s College Advisor, Laura Kazan, will be offering a repeat of her year-long College Exploration course for college-bound 11th graders. This year’s class was a big success and provided learners with valuable college admissions information, essay practice, and college search opportunities. Learners will leave with a strong understanding of the college system, how to find the best financial aid, a list of appropriate colleges, and what is expected in their college essays. The class will be both informative and fun! The class will meet in a live synchronous online class for one hour each week with additional work expected outside of class beforehand. If you are interested in taking this course, please complete this College Exploration Course Interest Form (5 elective credits each semester).

May Webinars and Virtual Events

Fall Webinars

Mark your calendars for our upcoming May activities! Please click the links below for all of the details on how to register:

5/12 at 3 p.m.: Roundtable Discussion About Anxiety

5/13 at 1 p.m.: TK-2 Read Aloud “It Could Have Been Worse”

5/14 at 10 a.m.: Financing College

5/14 at 1 p.m.: End of the Year Bingo

5/18 at 11 a.m.: TK-3rd Grade Virtual Show and Tell

5/19 at 12 p.m.: Presentation by Jonathan Mooney “Normal Sucks”

Webinars 2021
VirtualEvents_Spring2021

MAP Testing Window Opens Soon

MAP Testing

Three cheers for Measured Academic Progress!!! We are very excited about the recent approval from the US Department of Ed to use our MAP assessments in lieu of CAASPP testing this spring. This is great news as learners are already comfortable with this testing format and will be able to test in a familiar learning environment. The official testing window will open May 2, 2021. Your educational facilitator will coordinate a time for you to take this assessment during this last full month of school. For more information, watch this introduction video to learn about MAP testing (PowerPoint here). You can also visit NWEA.org/Parent-Toolkit.

Meet DreamUp to Space Team Member Quentin Gauge

iLEAD Exploration learner Quentin Gauge DreamUp

By iLEAD Exploration learners Grace Stumpf & Raegan Brown

DreamUp to Space is a project that challenges young people to understand and explore the impact that microgravity has on matter. Through a partnership with DreamUp, iLEAD learners in grades 5-12 are inspired to develop the skills and knowledge to design, develop, and propose an experiment that could be run on the International Space Station.

In July of 2020, two teams from iLEAD Schools were selected for flight in the 2020 DreamUp to Space Virtual Mission & Experiment Design Challenge. Currently, learners from across the iLEAD Schools’ network were selected and are now collaborating on these two “Launch Teams” — Team Carrot and Team Adzuki — in preparation for a spring launch of their experiments to the International Space Station.

Each learner has unique interests, strengths, and goals to bring to each team. We’d like to introduce you to our team members! Today we’re introducing Quentin Gauge.

Meet Quentin Gauge, Team Adzuki

Quentin Gauge Team AdzukiQuentin Gauge is a 6th grade learner at iLEAD Exploration. He is the principal investigator (a fancy way of saying he had the original experiment idea and proposal) of Team Adzuki. In his spare time, Quentin enjoys building Legos and making stop-motion animations. Quentin also likes to read biographies and autobiographies and is a Harry Potter fan. He likes to cook for his little brother and frequently helps his parents in the kitchen. His favorite food is Mongolian dumplings, because he is half Mongolian and loves to celebrate his culture. We were given the opportunity to ask him a few questions!

Favorite book and why?

“My favorite is the The Trials of Apollo series by Rick Riordan because it is a mythology-based book, and I love how Greek mythology stories show important morals and have fun, exotic stories.”

What do you want to do when you get older? Do you have a dream job?

“I have many interests right now. I could see myself as an astrophysicist and a professor at CalTech. I could become a singer like my grandfather, or a doctor.”

Who do you look up to?

“One person I look up to is my grandpa, who used to be a famous opera singer in Mongolia. I look up to him because I love to sing and because he always helps me and always pushes me to become a good singer.”

How does it feel knowing you are getting an opportunity very few people have ever had: to be part of a team sending an experiment to space?

“I feel extremely lucky to be part of such an incredible opportunity. It is a rare thing for a twelve-year-old to be sending an experiment to the ISS. It is even an unheard of and unimaginable thing to go anywhere in the world, or even to other parts of the United States, and that is why I feel like the luckiest kid in the world.”

We look forward to introducing more team members to you soon!

The Discovery of Gold

Virtual Park Tour

We hope you’ll join us on April 22 at 11 a.m. when we explore the story of how the discovery of gold impacted California. Please take a look at the flier below for more information and registration details:

LINKED The_Gold_Discovery
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