Compass Chronicle

Los Angeles Charter | January 2021

A Word from our Assistant Principal, Tricia Gallagher

As we approach the start of Semester 2, I am reminded of what a pleasure it is to work with our CCS of Los Angeles community and see our families' tremendous attributes. During these unprecedented times, we’ve seen perseverance and dedication from our scholars and learning coaches, as well as a staff who works passionately to support them. Together we will grow and work towards achieving our goals, one scholar at a time. Let’s continue to work hard and reflect on our Compass scholars’ success, loud and proud!

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What's Been Happening at the Los Angeles Charter?

As the final months of 2020 came to a close, we are pleased to recognize the great things our scholars have experienced and accomplished. Virtual engagement opportunities have been plentiful and a successful pivot for connecting our Compass families in the comfort and safety of their homes.

Scholar workshops included a schoolwide talent show and spelling bee where scholars showcased their skills. Additional workshops were fun learning experiences that included baking, computer programming, animals in the wild, stories read by authors, and creating beautiful art. Although our Coffee with Compass has moved from meeting in-person to a virtual platform, the CCS of Los Angeles team has enjoyed spending time getting to know our families better while discussing a range of topics from birthdays and baby showers to curriculum and needed support.

Our online scholars have been engaged in their learning labs, where they have the opportunity to discuss fun topics and explore current events in the world around them. Scholars in the Accelerate Education online courses have been able to track their hard work on various projects and assessments.

Supervising teachers and families continue to collaborate to provide the best educational experience for scholars. Teachers provide valuable resources to help scholars meet their goals and continue to offer the gold standard in personalized learning. During these unprecedented times, collaboration is needed more than ever as families embrace the new year.

The entire CCS of Los Angeles team looks forward to 2021 and continuing to work closely with our amazing families!

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Work Samples and Learning Labs!

Kindergarten Lab!

During Ms. Hooper’s kindergarten learning lab, scholars learned all about winter.

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What Does Peace Mean to You?

Elinor a second-grader, shows her writing skills as she defines and gives examples of peace.
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Charlotte a seventh-grader, conducted scientific research about earthquakes and created a presentation to show all that she learned.
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Typing Like a Pro!

Liam a fourth-grader, enjoys learning with his TypeTaskic subscription.
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A Dog's Perspective!

Juliana a sixth-grader, created a newsletter from a dog’s perspective.
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Platypus Project!

Abigail, seventh-grader wrote a science research report about the platypus and drew a picture to go with her report.

The Human Body!

Sawyer F, a first-grader, learned all about the human body. In her own words, “I learned many things about the human body. Bones help us bend. The heart is always working, even when we are sleeping. Lungs help us by bringing oxygen into our bodies. The human body is cool!”
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Sports Broadcast in Spanish!

In Ms. Davis’ Spanish class, scholars listened to a sports broadcast in Spanish and reflected on what they heard.
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Government Discussions

With the events that took place at the Capitol a few short weeks ago, Ms. Rosen had the opportunity to lead a discussion in her government class to enable scholars to express their thoughts regarding the event during the learning lab session using a video from NearPod.
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Scholar Story: The Baez Family

The Baez Family

Our family chose the “learning from home” path for our boys Jacob (8) and Caleb (5) after having a very rough time in the classroom. My oldest, Jacob, has autism and would come home from school with intense anxiety, having meltdown after meltdown. School became aversive for him, and he wasn’t learning or being challenged.

We took a leap of faith and came to Compass, which has been the absolute best decision.

Compass has taught my boys that school is FUN, learning is EXCITING, and we have a completely new outlook on education. Compass takes the time to assess where my scholars are academically and provide them with the challenges and supports that provide exponential growth academically, socially, and emotionally. My scholars have exceeded benchmarks and are both working multiple grade levels ahead, which couldn’t happen any other way.

Our typical school day starts at 9 am for my second grader, allowing focused work time to target math and writing. At 10 am, my kindergartener joins in, and we continue for another hour and a half, working on manners, calendar skills, spelling, and other core work. During that time, the kids get multiple breaks for jumping and sensory movement to focus their best. We have a two-hour break for lunch and outdoor playtime, and then we cozy up together again around the couch to read books before heading back outside for hands-on science and social studies. Our day ends at 3 pm for the kids to have free time and to be just that, kids. Open and explorative free time outdoors is a huge part of our day and a priority for our family. And that alone is, hands down, my greatest joy. Seeing my kids light up with learning and also have the time to run freely outside makes my heart sing.

Being the teacher to your own children can come with frustrations, and honestly, that typically comes in the form of kids not listening. However, when I experience resistance from them, it is a cue for me that something needs to be altered in our day. Flexibility is a major perk in learning from home. It is always a learning lesson for me to see what I can do to better support my children. Sometimes school gets moved outside, or we involve more movement to help us self regulate. If a flower isn’t growing, you wouldn’t blame the flower but rather change the environment, which is essentially the mantra of our day.

Making the leap from traditional public school to Compass and going from a brick and mortar to your own home for learning can absolutely feel overwhelming. Still, for anyone considering it, I would say try it. No decision you ever make academically is permanent. It’s okay to follow your children’s unique needs versus the societal norms. We chose Compass over others out of an abundance of research and their ability to work uniquely with my children. Working above grade level and still having open afternoons to freely play and peaceful evenings as a family is how we choose to raise our family.

My children's depth of education with the sounding board support from our Compass team is phenomenal. The IEP process has been a true act of absolute teamwork where our family is treated with respect and our sons' needs are met with utter enthusiasm. It’s just absolutely beautiful to see the shining light of educational possibilities that come from Compass. Needless to say, it has been the very best decision we could have ever made.

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Staff Spotlight: Meet Shannon Davis, Online Elementary School Teacher!

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Ms. Davis is an online middle school and high school Spanish teacher. She has worked at Compass for three years now. She enjoys assisting all of her scholars who choose an independent and virtual learning environment. She finds supporting this population of learners rewarding because it allows her to personalize and differentiate each students’ educational path according to their individual aspirations and needs. As an educator, a piece of advice she would want to share is to take it all one day at a time! In her free time, Ms. Davis loves to dance Lindy Hop and she’s even gotten pretty good at Shim Shaming!

Staff Spotlight: Meet Jenna Morales, Options Supervising Teacher

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I have been a supervising teacher at Compass for one year, and I help facilitate options families’ needs. My families are my "why". I do everything I can to help them on their educational journies and to be there in their lives, helping wherever they need it.

As an educator, I think the best piece of advice I was ever given is to have patience in all aspects. Patience with your scholar, patience with your learning coach, your supervising teacher, schoolwork, school, community, etc.

I was born and raised on a farm in Wisconsin, and in our free time, I like to get outside! My family and I try to be outside every waking minute of daylight and good weather.

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Are you enjoying the educational experience at Compass? Tell us! We want to hear from you. Why did you decide to join the Compass family? Or, what do you love most about being part of our community? Share you comments and all of your wonderful experiences at Compass with us! Click here to share.
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