Rise is a collection of student events or special projects that highlight student life at ASSETS Academy.
Credit Recovery, Mrs. Gilke, ASSETS Academy
When I took on the credit recovery class at ASSETS Academy, I had no idea what a rewarding experience it could be. Initially, I imagined monitoring students who, for whatever reason, failed a class and needed to recover some high school credits to graduate and would be completing online courses to meet those objectives. I also envisioned aiding students as they encountered various computer-related issues. Although it is true that part of my job entails doing those very things, I soon realized that my previous perceptions were quite limited in scope.
As I became more familiar with the curriculum offered in these virtual classrooms, it became clear that if students were to utilize this endeavor to the fullest, the experience could prove quite fruitful. For example, it is impressive how comprehensive the material is in courses like Physical Education, which offers a preview to subjects such as Physics and Anatomy and Physiology. Furthermore, upon meeting my students, I discovered that many were taking initial credit courses, which may or may not have been related to a credit recovery scenario. Therefore, if students are motivated enough, they could actually begin earning credits in advance, which could even lead to an early graduation from high school.
The amazing resource offering these potential rewards is known as Edgenuity, which is a “bank” of online courses designed to assist students in meeting their school objectives. Once a course is completed, school credits are earned. However, what many may not realize is that Edgenuity offers certain students the hope that they will be able to achieve their educational dreams despite the adversities they are presently facing. Not only can this program assist learners who need to retake a course to pass, but Edgenuity is also a viable avenue for those who are passing but, due to special circumstances, need the flexibility of being able to work at school or at home to accomplish their goals. Despite the circumstances that bring students to me, I want them all to leave with the attitude that nothing is impossible to accomplish if one has the determination to succeed.
I am a firm believer in positive thinking, so I project daily inspirations on my front board for everyone to read. The messages are designed to challenge the students to conquer the negative thinking patterns that can sometimes invade the mind and prevent them from reaching their fullest potential. One of my greatest goals for each of my students is to instill in them the desire to take ownership of their destiny.
I created “Project: Taking Ownership” as an incentive program for students to keep track of their course progress so completion can be attained within a certain time frame and all courses are passed. Seasonal booklets have been created to make it a more enjoyable experience for them as they record their progress and daily grades on their tracking sheets. We have periodic drawings for gifts based on productivity and responsible, self-driven behavior. In addition to meeting their weekly objectives, perfect attendance and prompt arrival to class are encouraged as well as going above and beyond by working at home or during tutorials especially if the daily goal was not met. They even earn a ticket for completing the booklets the entire week. As extra incentive for productivity, each student gets a treat bag upon completion of a course as well as a “shout out” during the morning announcements. I am always trying to think of ways to keep them engaged so they can get the most out of this experience.
Although students are rewarded for their accomplishments in my class, I feel as though I have also been given a gift just by serving in this position. Some of my students have inspired me because they already practice that which I attempt to instill in others. They are true role models because they have chosen not to be defeated in life regardless of the number of challenges they may face. Instead, they are committed to learning and succeeding in school, which will certainly serve them well upon graduation from high school. I hope all of my students will develop these positive practices because I think each of them are very special and capable of doing amazing things in life if they choose to believe in themselves. I am blessed to be their teacher.