Instructional Innovations

MCHS Newsletter: Week of February 1

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What Does It Mean to be a Red Raider?

By Coach Mike Haynes, Athletic Director and Guru of All Things


The perfect student in most teachers’ eyes would be a student who is bright, hardworking, disciplined and dedicated to doing their best. A classroom full of these types of students is every teacher’s dream class. That happens to be the description of the ideal student-athlete as well. Many times now, we often have a disconnect between the student and the athlete instead of considering them as one in the same. “A student athlete (sometimes written studentathlete) is a participant in an organized competitive sport sponsored by the educational institution in which he or she is enrolled.” Thanks to the media and a few bad examples, many people get very negative feelings when they hear the term. We all hear the stories of the college athlete who rarely attends class and still gets passing grades. We see examples of college athletes that get in legal trouble only to have the charges dropped because of their talents on the field. It is no surprise that these feelings get passed on to the high school athlete. Many people think that because someone has talent on a field or court that they receive preferential treatment in the classroom. This is an idea that we must move past in order to move our schools in the direction we need and want them to go. We have to hold all students to a high standard.


I believe that athletics and academics go hand in hand. As a student, I worked harder in the classroom because I was an athlete. I had to maintain grades in order to be eligible to participate in sports. The competitive nature of sports carried over into the classroom, and I found myself competing with my classmates for better grades. We often helped our teammates in classes they struggled in so that they would continue to be eligible for sports. As a teacher and a coach, I have worked very hard in the classroom because of the negative stereotype of the coach who is a “slacker” in the classroom. I have been influenced by many great teachers, who also coached sports. I see many examples of this on our faculty. I believe if we foster a relationship between athletics and academics we can see huge benefits to our students and our school. Success--whether in the classroom or on the field--requires hard work, discipline, and maximizing potential. The exact traits required to be a great athlete are required to be a great student. The same traits it takes to be a great coach are the ones it takes to be a great teacher. These things are not exclusive of one another. If we as educators foster these traits we can improve both our academics and athletics.


As I began considering the job of Athletic Director, I had some questions to answer. Who are we? Who do we want to be? What does it mean to be a Red Raider? Over the last several months, I have worked with Steve Crouse and Molly McCarty and others to begin developing answers to these questions. In any endeavor, a few basic steps have to be met. First thing you must do is honestly and accurately determine where you are as an athletic department. At the present time, we are not where we want to be in our athletic programs overall. We have some teams that do well. Our softball team, baseball team, and tennis teams have had success. Our girl’s golf team has been very strong. We have some good wrestlers and some good track individuals. Our volleyball team and basketball teams are improving. We have struggled in football, soccer and cross country. Where do we want to be? The answer to that is simple and may shock some. We want to be great at everything. In the 20 years I have been at MCHS I have watched our school improve its facilities greatly. Our graduation rate is higher than it has ever been. Our AP offerings have increased and student achievement in these classes has improved. I believe that this type improvement is possible in our athletic programs as well. We are all aware of schools that attract families to their district because of their academic and athletic programs. These students come in with high expectations in the classroom and on the field. This can move our school to the “next level” both academically and athletically. Where are we? We are improving. Where do we want to be? We want to strive for greatness. That brings me to the last question…


What does it mean to be a Red Raider? I asked students and faculty what it means to be a Red Raider. I got some enlightening answers; most people said things like family, having school spirit, or being “country.” All of these things are accurate, but we should want more. The characteristics of the ideal student and ideal athlete I discussed earlier can become the description of a Red Raider. Every brand has some degree of brand recognition. People know what to expect from Ford, Chevy, or Toyota. With a great partnership between our academic programs and our athletic programs, we can make the brand recognition of a Red Raider. A Red Raider is a student and athlete that is bright, hardworking, and dedicated to excellence. A Red Raider has a sense of pride and high level of expectation. I want to see a school where students help each other excel both academically and athletically because the pride and expectation of being a Red Raider is high. I also want to see our teachers and coaches working together to ensure the success of all of our students in both areas.

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Caught in the Act...

This week's Caught in the Act teacher is Dr. Jonie Axon. Dr. Axon teaches Economics (in the best department in the world according to Axon) to our seniors where she excels at using real world problems to help her students understand difficult concepts. Walk into her classroom on any given day and you will hear her reference economics in the real world as she guides students in their study. Dr. Axon is also great at relating to her students. Her classroom environment is fun and engaging--but don't let that fool you, they are always working.


Dr. Axon took the theory of lifelong learner to heart: she earned her Bachelor degree at UGA and then went on to Piedmont to earn her MAT, Ed.S, and Ed.D--holy degrees, Batman! She loves what she does, and it shows. Her parents own a small business and she loves sharing entrepreneurship skills with her students.



Business Project (created by Axon, Herndon, and Purdue): An Example of Problem-Based Learning


The business project they created was divided into two parts. The first part allowed for the students to create the business. They had to look at the issues (standards) that go into the planning process of a business. The second part had them create advertising strategies for their business and then pitch it to the class in a shark tank style presentation. You should check out some of their finished products/advertisements!

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Technology Tip: YouCanBookMe

By Kelly Cassidy


Do you get frustrated and tired of those little conference slips. Do parents pick the same times as one another and inevitably 6 parents want the 6:30 pm slot? Welcome to the best tool you will ever meet, YOUCANBOOK.me


You can book me is a great appointment scheduling app. You sign-up for a free account and send out the link via remind.com or on a piece of paper with students. Parents simply visit the link and sign-up for a conference time. It allows you to put in contact information that you want to request, like an email or phone number and also sends you an email confirmation. Want to try it out? Click the link to go to the "mock" one that I made for you guys to try it out.


http://kcassidy.youcanbook.me


If you have parents who do not have access to sign-up online- they can return the slip and you can enter their information manually to reserve that time slot for them. So no worries about those parents who still want to use the forms.

ACE Video: Silly Way to Explain ACE to Your Students

All About That ACE music video
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PBIS Success at MCHS!!

We currently only have 18 students on Tier 3, which means they have four or more discipline referrals for student incivility/disorderly conduct.


What you do in your classroom makes a difference--this is evidence of your work!

You're the One that I Want

In honor of last night's live performance of Grease on tv.
Grease- You're the one that I want [HQ+lyrics]