Posts Tagged ‘Paragon’
Tuesday, March 29th, 2011
March 21, 2011 (Atlanta, Ga.) — Mosaica Education, founded January 1997, has received excellent commendations and is recommended for a five-year corporate re-accreditation from AdvancED, the world’s largest independent accreditation commission.
AdvancED’s district-wide re-accreditation will apply to all future charter schools operated by Mosaica, within the five-year period. This means new charters, will not be required to go through an accreditation process.
The AdvancED Quality Assurance Review Team also singled out Mosaica’s schools for special commendations on six different fronts:
- Passionate leadership, skill and expertise, which resulted in what AdvancED characterized as “a highly successful education management company”;
- The proprietary Paragon® curriculum and educational philosophy:
- An innovative operational culture that “values ‘edupreneurship’ and . . . innovation”;
- Acceptance of moral responsibility to students and staff for teaching and learning;
- The successful development of a scalable, sustainable model, as well as an organizational capacity for continuous improvement; and
- A demonstrated record of student achievement.
AdvancED is the world’s largest education community, serving more than 27,000 public and private schools and districts across the United States and in 69 countries that educate more than 15 million students.
Mosaica, which launched its charter schools on the vision of its co-founders, now operates 75 charter schools nationwide, including blended-model and online schools in Arizona and California, and it has expanded into global education, with 15 schools in the Middle East and plans to open more based on its acclaimed educational program.
Accreditation, significant for oversight and accountability purposes, includes a documented self-study and independent review panel of experienced educational professionals. This is designed to ensure compliance with legal and regulatory standards in the various jurisdictions where Mosaica operates.
At its core, Mosaica focuses on student achievement through the implementation of its proprietary Paragon® Curriculum. Paragon® is a hands-on, inquiry-based Humanities program.
Dawn Eidelman, Ph.D., Mosaica’s co-founder and Paragon’s principal architect, noted that the college-preparatory program is specifically designed for 21st-century schools; it is delivered digitally and updated annually, with a focus on bringing together students, teachers, parents, and community partners to celebrate human excellence in a hands-on journey through the history of world culture.
“There is a palpable bond among the standing-room only crowds at Paragon Nights,” she remarked.
About Mosaica Education, Inc.
Mosaica Education, Inc. is a global education company that operates high-performing schools and provides related services in the United States and Internationally. Mosaica has educated over 45,000 children since its inception. The company currently manages 90 school programs in eight states, the District of Columbia and the Middle East. Mosaica-managed schools utilize a unique school design, which combines a proprietary curriculum Paragon®, with state-of-the-art technology. Paragon offers a hands-on approach focused on the multiple intelligences and individualized learning styles through a thematic approach of study that covers multiple subject areas.
AdvancED brings together more than 100 years of experience and the expertise of the two largest national accreditation agencies — the North Central Association Commission on Accreditation and School Improvement (NCA CASI), and the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Council on Accreditation and School Improvement (SACS CASI). The AdvancED accreditation process, is a clear and comprehensive program of evaluation and external review, supported by research-based standards, and dedicated to helping schools, districts and education providers continuously improve. It is the world’s largest education community, serving more than 27,000 public and private schools and districts across the U.S. and in 69 countries that educate more than 15 million students.
Friday, February 25th, 2011
The study of women in history has only recently developed. Prior to the 1960s, men were the primary researchers and writers of history. All too often, the story of women was relegated to the sidelines of history and in footnotes. Today, much research into the lives of women in history has revealed new depths and dimensions to our shared past, and we are fortunate that it is available. Still, women’s role in history is taught often as an afterthought, not as part of the main event. Women’s History Month is an opportunity to teach what has been traditionally overlooked and to study it as an important part of the history of all of us.
A goal of the Paragon Plus (English Language Arts Supplement) Curriculum in March is for students to broaden their perspective and understanding of the great contributions women have made to our culture and world by studying the contributions, struggles, issues, and impact of great women around the globe and across time. We want all students, boys and girls, to recognize themselves in our curriculum and in history. With the focused study of women in March, we hope that your student will make a connection between women’s struggles and achievements and his or her own abilities to succeed in whatever s/he may try! Here are some ideas for sharing in your student’s learning:
For Younger Students. Check out the following picture books from your local library that feature strong women:
You Forgot Your Skirt, Amelia Bloomer!: A Very Improper Story, by Shana Corey. This colorful picture book gives the story of the 19th century women’s activist who not only started her own newspaper and fought for women’s right to vote, but also initiated a new and freer trend in women’s clothing. After reading the book, ask your student to list and describe the different things Amelia did that were “shocking” for her time. Have him or her explain how these things helped women then and today. What would they not be able to do if it wasn’t for Amelia Bloomer? Could girls wear pants?
My Name Is Georgia: A Portrait, by Jeanette Winter. This picture book portrays the life of artist, Georgia O’Keefe. The story describes the artist from her early days as a strong-minded, independent young girl to the 98-year-old remarkable artist who showed the world her point of view through her paintings. After reading the book, ask your student to describe her paintings—the subjects, colors, and style. Then, brainstorm and write down a list of ideas that your child would like to paint a picture of (remind him or her that O’Keefe often painted very commonplace things from nature). You may wish to go on a walk together to inspire ideas.
Ask: What did you see on our walk that you would like to paint a picture of?
Provide your student with paints, brushes, and paper and have him or her use the same rich colors and broad stokes as O’Keefe did to create a painting.
Paper Bag Princess, by Michael Martchenko. This updated fairy tale celebrates a strong female character—a princess who uses her wits to conquer dragons and rescue her kidnapped prince. After reading the story, ask your student to compare this story to other fairy tales s/he may have heard, such as Sleeping Beauty. Create a two-column chart or Venn diagram on the paper so that your student can describe what is the same and different between each. Encourage your child to describe and analyze the characters, the plot, and the ending. Which story does your student like better? Why? You may have your student describe his or her feelings in a journal.
Current Events. Women are making history everyday and are filling leadership positions faster than at any other time in history. Share newspaper and magazine articles that feature strong, intelligent women in leadership positions. For example, First Lady Michelle Obama is on the cover of many magazines; Hillary Clinton travels the world as Secretary of State; Nancy Pelosi was the first woman Speaker of the House and continues to serve as one of several women in Congress, and so on. Worldwide, women are speaking out in increasing numbers, as well. For instance, Egyptian women had a strong voice during the recent political protests and change in their country. Share the articles, discuss, and then create a bulletin board featuring all the accomplishments of women making history today.
Writing. Have your student create a small book about a woman in his or her life who is very special. Provide 6 – 10 half sheets of drawing paper and colored pencils and/or crayons. On each page, have your student write 1 – 3 sentences of text and draw accompanying illustrations. Your son or daughter can then make a cover out of construction paper and bind the book with yarn. Be sure to let your child share his or her book with the woman s/he wrote about!
Research. Solid research projects begin with broad questions that lead to smaller questions, which ultimately lead to a tighter focus. For example any of the following questions provide a broad base for beginning research:
- Why do we have Women’s History Month?
- When, why, and who started the women’s movement in the U.S.?
- Is there a women’s movement today? Who are some key players and what issues are they working on?
- Are there any significant women’s organizations today and what are their histories?
- I’ve heard of Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony—what did they do, when, and why?
Once the broad question is formulated, research may begin. Through the process of research, the smaller questions will give rise to well-defined objectives. For example, the broad question, “When, why, and who started the women’s movement in the US?” may lead to a research project on Elizabeth Cady Stanton.
Together with your student, formulate 3 – 5 broad research questions that pertain to Women’s History Month. Through research, narrow the focus, identify objectives, and work together on a paper about your selected, focused topic. Any of the websites listed below are a good starting point:
National Women’s Hall of Fame
NOTE: This site is currently undergoing upgrades, and will restart on March 8, 2011, the day new Inductees to the National Women’s Hall of Fame are to be announced.
National Women’s History Project
The National Museum of Women in the Arts
International Museum of Women
Comparing & Analyzing Quotations. Have your student read the two quotations below, both by First Ladies—one by Abigail Adams in 1776 and the other by Hillary Clinton in 2008. How do these two quotes relate to one another? Did Abigail Adams’ prediction come to pass? Did women “foment a rebellion”? How did Hillary Clinton’s quotation affirm what Ms. Adams said? How do you think Abigail would feel about Hillary’s accomplishment? Does your student think we will have a woman President in his or her lifetime? Why or why not?
“If particular care and attention is not paid to the ladies, we are determined to foment a rebellion and will not hold ourselves bound by any laws in which we have no voice or representation.”
- Abigail Adams, U.S. First Lady, 1776
“Although we weren’t able to shatter that highest, hardest glass ceiling this time, thanks to you, it’s got about 18 million cracks in it. And the light is shining through like never before, filling us all with the hope and the sure knowledge that the path will be a little easier next time.”
- Hillary Clinton, 2008
We hope you and your student enjoy Women’s History Month and that students broaden their perspective and understanding of the great strides women have made to achieve their dreams. We hope, also, that in their study of women’s history, all students will see a connection between women’s struggles and achievements and their own abilities to succeed in whatever they try!
Dawn D. Eidelman, Ph.D.
Chief Education Officer
Mosaica Education, Inc.
Thursday, January 20th, 2011
African American History Month
During February, students will learn about and celebrate African-American History through the implementation of Mosaica Education’s African-American History Guide. In the first section, students learn why African Americans are honored in February, and are introduced to the genre of biography. Students will learn the features of a biography and carry out an interview of a classmate to help them learn one way in which information is collected for a biography. In Section 2, students will begin to apply the skills they learned in Section 1 by interviewing and writing a “personal biography” about someone in their lives whom they admire. They will be responsible for interviewing this person, accessing at least one photograph of this person, and turning their notes into a short biography. In the third section, students learn how to write a biography about a famous person who may not be living and/or whom they can not interview. They will select an African American who particularly impresses them, carry out research, and complete a polished biography of this person. By the end of the unit, students will have learned about many African Americans and how to write biographies.
We invite you to extend this learning of biography to encompass George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, and our current president, Barack Obama.
More Power with Paragon: Identifying the Qualities of Great Leadership-Home Connections
Great leaders, remarkably creative individuals, extraordinarily courageous citizens, unsung heroes—people who have made a difference—all are integral to the Paragon Curriculum. A major goal of the Paragon Curriculum is to showcase great people, past and present, and around the globe. We want students to recognize the qualities of greatness, to identify the deeds and actions of great people, and to understand the societal and historical impact such people have had. In doing so, we want students to see that they possess some of those same qualities, or that they are being raised under similar conditions, or that they too have a burning desire to right a wrong or make a big change. We want them to recognize their own greatness and have the confidence to know they can positively impact their family, community, city, state, nation, or even the world! Here are some ways in which you can share in your student’s learning:
There are a number of activities you and your student may engage in to explore biography. The first step is researching the individual, whether Washington, Lincoln, another American president, or any famous African-American (a partial list of websites is provided, but encourage your student to go beyond, as there are numerous available websites). Here are some of the things you and your student may do after the research is completed:
Role-play an Interview. Either you or your student takes on the persona of the person being interviewed and the other becomes the modern-day interviewer. If possible, let your student dress up like Washington or Lincoln—have fun too!
Write a Poem or Song. Invite your student to write a poem or a song about the person s/he researched. Challenge him or her to try and capture the essence of the individual in a creative form. Make sure your student reads aloud or sings his or her poem/song to you and your family.
On-the-Scene Reporter. Ask your student to select one dramatic event in the life of the person s/he has researched. Then, have him or her imagine s/he’s an on-the-scene reporter giving a detailed account of the event. For example, maybe it will be Washington’s courageous encampment at Valley Forge and the commentary could begin like: “This has to be the coldest, most bitter weather I have ever experienced in my life! Yet, for two months now, General George Washington and his troops are …”
George Washington First President
Abraham Lincoln Online
The White House: Presidents
Speech. Select an important and famous speech by Washington, Lincoln, or an African American and read it carefully with your student. Discuss the message being conveyed, as well as the meaning of particular vocabulary and phrases. Depending on your student’s age, challenge him or her to memorize the speech and present it. Be sure to use props and encourage your student to infuse it with drama. If possible, record your student’s rendering and play it back!
American Rhetoric: Top 100 Speeches
Portraiture Art. Leaders often have portraits painted of them, which capture the character of the person. First, you and your student can explore American portraiture art at the following website:
Smithsonian: National Portrait Gallery
Then, explain to your student that s/he is going to do an art project that shows his or her favorite leaders from American history and captures the values and principles of our democracy. Explain that s/he will be making a collage! The collage may show one American leader or many, and the collage may include actual images of the people (downloaded and printed from the Internet or from magazines), symbols, and/or words. Your student may set his or her collage within the shape of the United States, or select any other shape such as an oval (many portraits from the past were set in ovals), etc.
Provide poster board, magazines for cutting, scissors, glue, and any other materials that would be useful. When your student has finished his or her collage, ask him or her to present it to you and explain why s/he chose the images s/he did. Hang the collage in your home for all to enjoy.
Great people often say great things that are circulated and shared as memorable quotations. Quotations have the quality of conveying something very important and inspiring with only a few words (quotations are usually one or two sentences in length). Through the study of quotations, the reader can imagine the character of the speaker as well as the qualities s/he possesses. With your student, read these famous quotations by George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, and President Barack Obama. Discuss their meanings and then abstract out the kind of person each speaker was/is. What does each value? Is he stating and upholding democratic principles? Does his quotation provide other information about who he is? If yes, what does it suggest? Do you think these three men share any of the same leadership qualities? If yes, what are they?
“Ninety-nine percent of the failures come from people who have the habit of making excuses.”
- George Washington
“Let us raise a standard to which the wise and honest can aspire.”
- George Washington
“Happiness and moral duty are inseparably connected.”
- George Washington
“As I would not be a slave, so I would not be a master. This expresses my idea of democracy. Whatever differs from this, to the extent of the difference, is no democracy.”
- Abraham Lincoln
“I am rather inclined to silence, and whether that be wise or not, it is at least more unusual nowadays to find a man who can hold his tongue than to find one who cannot.”
- Abraham Lincoln
“Whenever I hear any one arguing for slavery I feel a strong impulse to see it tried on him personally.”
- Abraham Lincoln
“There’s not a liberal America and a conservative America—there’s the United States of America.”
- Barack Obama
“We need to internalize this idea of excellence. Not many folks spend a lot of time trying to be excellent.”
- Barack Obama
“Do we participate in a politics of cynicism or a politics of hope?”
- Barack Obama
May your student recognize his or her greatness through this exploration and celebration of President’s Day and African-American History Month!
Dawn D. Eidelman, Ph.D.
Chief Education Officer
President, Paragon Division
Mosaica Education, Inc.
Monday, October 11th, 2010
Paragon© propels student achievement in Mosaica Education schools; therefore, a cumulative understanding is best accomplished when your student continues with us throughout his or her elementary and middle school years. At every grade level, the fundamental skills of reading, writing, listening, communicating, and presenting are integral and ongoing. Paragon keeps building on prior knowledge so that your student will gain ground and accelerate achievement with each passing year, a trend that defies the odds in traditional public education.
In Middle School, students will delve into Paragon© Humanities, which is organized into four quarter units, rather than the eight units found in the elementary grades. This provides the opportunity for students to explore concepts and ideas in greater depth through research, primary source documents, literature, and hands-on learning. Like the elementary grades, the units are structured around essential questions in world history, civics, geography, economics, and social studies. Middle School students will also begin their studies of Paragon© World Literature. Each quarter, they will read a novel, biography, myth, collection of folk tales, or another genre that corresponds to the content in Paragon© Humanities. The interdisciplinary connections make the learning engaging, meaningful, and memorable for students.
Monday, August 9th, 2010
Phoenix, AZ August 6, 2010 – Mercury Online will open to Arizona students in grades K- 8 on August 16, 2010,. Mercury Online Academy offers a hybrid approach to education, by combining the benefits of a face-to-face learning with the flexibility of the online environment. These components make Mercury Online an innovative and unique approach to educating today’s students.
“Online education has changed drastically over the years,” said Gene Eidelman co-founder of Mercury AZ and President of Mercury Education, Inc. “With Mercury, instead of having a teacher lecturing students you have a teacher responding to the individual needs of your child, via the internet.”
Mercury Online Academy is a member of the Mosaica Education, Inc. network of schools, and uses the innovative Paragon© Curriculum, which is fully aligned with Arizona State standards. Paragon© combines the rigor of classical education with the relevance required by contemporary society. Students learn about character, ethics, empathy and self-esteem by studying the world’s great heroes, both canonical and unsung, and by stepping into the shoes of great historical figures, both real and imaginary.
Mercury AZ is open for enrollment for the 2010-11 school year. The academy offers teacher-directed online instruction at home or at one of the Mercury Tech centers. The two centers are located in Phoenix, AZ., at partner schools:
Ahwatukee Foothills Prep
10210 S. 50th Pl
Phoenix, AZ 85044
Humanities and Sciences Institute
5201 N. 7th Street
Phoenix, Arizona 85014
Classes this year will begin on August 16th, 2010. For more information on how to enroll at Mercury Online Academy of Arizona, visit http://mercuryaz.org.
Thursday, August 5th, 2010
Mosaica Education, Inc. would like to invite parents across the nation to enroll their children in one of our tuition-free, college prep, charter schools for the 2010-2011 school year.
Enrollment is now open to all Mosaica network schools, located in Arizona, Colorado, Georgia, Illinois, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Washington, D.C., for students residing in the respective school districts.
All Mosaica school implements a thematic, interactive program that incorporates multiple learning styles. Mornings are dedicated to building solid skills in the core subject areas of reading, writing, math and science. While the afternoons are reserved for foreign language, music, physical education and a daily 90-minute block of the content-rich Paragon curriculum.
The Paragon curriculum is interdisciplinary, engaging, discovery-based and multi-cultural. The hands-on approach of Paragon addresses the multiple intelligences and individual learning styles. This enhances students’ communication skills, analysis and self-expression.
Mosaica schools also offer an emotionally and physically safe learning environment, access to computers and technology, committed and qualified teachers and staff and encourage parental involvement. Teachers will conduct regular goal setting conferences with individual children and their parents, to ensure the student’s success.
To find out more about each school and the grades offered, click here. It is imperative that parents submit enrollment applications for each student planning to enroll, as early as possible.
Thursday, April 1st, 2010
Atlanta, GA (Mosaica Education, Inc.) April 1, 2010 – Last night, Atlanta Preparatory Academy (APA) held a reception and Paragon night for its school community. City of Atlanta, Mayor Kasim Reed and other local community leaders were in attendance. The academy is located at 569 Martin Luther King, Jr. Drive NW, Atlanta, GA 30314.
Paragon Night, is a time to showcase what the students have learned in their Paragon studies. Paragon Nights are widely attended by the community and feature music, art and performances led by students. The theme for the event was the French and American Revolutions. The next Paragon Night will be April 5th at 5pm.
About Atlanta Preparatory Academy
Atlanta Preparatory Academy is a K-6 charter school for students residing within the Atlanta Public School district. Atlanta Preparatory Academy offers a college preparatory experience to all students at no cost.