6th Grade Summit FAQ

How is the blue line established?

The blue line indicates whether or not a student is on track with his or her assignments.  Please view the link below for a more detailed description of your student’s “This Year” page.

https://plp.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/articles/221139887-This-Year-Tab

How does Summit determine grades?

As a Summit Pilot School, we were required to sign on to the Summit grading policy.  The policy is outlined at the link below.

https://plp.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/articles/221239207-Grades-Tab

The Summit Personalized Learning Program encourages students to study the content area information from PLT 2 hours each night.  Because of the lack of internet and computer access in the Snow Hill community, we cannot make this requirement.  This has caused the SHMS Leadership Team to adjust the grading policy for SHMS students.  The differences are outlined below.  If you have any questions, please feel free to contact the SHMS Leadership Team.

Summit’s Policy Snow Hill Middle’s Policy
Cognitive Skills (Projects): 70% Cognitive Skills (Projects): 70%
Power Focus Areas: 21% Power Focus Areas AND Additional Focus Areas: 30%
Additional Focus Areas: 9%

Cognitive Skills Rubric

How we will determine the success of the Summit Program?

Data from the 2014 and 2015 PARCC Assessment will be used baseline data for Worcester County’s evaluation of the Summit Personalized Learning program.  We will use the Grade 6 end of year assessment scores in Math and Reading/Language Arts at SHMS to see the growth of this cohort of students from 2014 to 2015, 2015 to 2016, and 2016 to 2017.  We will also compare the 6th grade 2017 scores from SHMS to schools across Worcester County, Maryland, and Nationally.  Furthermore, as a cohort, we will be comparing this groups relative growth against other schools relative growth at both the county and state levels.  We will be examining the achievement gap which exists for our African American students, students who receive Free and Reduced Meals, and students identified as needing special services.  Beyond PARRC scores, we will be using I-Ready data to make the same comparisons as well as NWEA’s MAP data to compare our scores to other Summit programs across the country.

While academic factors are important, there are non-academic factors that will help determine whether we continue the Summit Personalized Learning program.  We will compare the results of the Gallup Poll from both 2015, 2016, and 2017.  We will pull focus groups from our stakeholders including students, teachers, and parents.

At the end of the 2016-1027 school year, the Summit Personalized Learning Program will be evaluated and a decision will be made as to whether it will be continued at SHMS in 6th grade and any grades after.

What does instruction look like in Summit Personalized Learning Program?

When you walk into a Summit classroom at SHMS, you will see a variety of activities going on.  During PLT, students are working on a playlist of content material to meet the objectives of the course.  The playlist includes a variety of resources such as readings, videos, games, and/or flashcards.  Teachers can modify resources as necessary to support the needs of students at SHMS.  Once a student has completed a content assessment, the teacher can identify whether or not the student is struggling in an area.  This allows the teacher to pull specific groups to address specific objectives.  At times, teachers may identify a different kind of need such as note taking or test taking strategies.  These issues can also be addressed during PLT time.  Students are also learning to navigate their own learning by choosing resources that work best for them.

During Project time, students are using transdisciplinary skills to dive deeper into their content areas and also to develop the cognitive skills that are tied to student success in college and career.  For example, one cognitive skill that is taught is using evidence and reasoning.  In science, students complete a tradition lab assignment which allows them to both apply their content knowledge and focus on using evidence to prove a claim.  In English, students complete a research project where they find evidence to prove a claim and hold a debate to show what they know.

Throughout the day, students will be involved in a variety of instructional activities that include, reading independently, working in collaborative groups, and working with teachers.

What kind of assessments are used in Summit Personalized Learning?

Students are assessed in two ways, through content assessments (Focus Areas, Additional Focus Areas, and Challenge Areas) and Projects.  Content assessments are worth 30% and projects are worth 70%.  Students take content assessments on demand.  In order words, students are able to request to take an assessment when they feel ready.  All grading is based on mastery, which means that students must get a 80% on the assessment to move on to another focus area.  If students do not reach 80% mastery, then their grade will be incomplete until 80% mastery is reached.  For more detail about assessments in Summit, please visit the following links.

Focus Area and Content Assessment Grading

https://plp.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/articles/226226027-Focus-Area-and-Content-Assessment-Grading

Project/Cognitive Skills Grading

https://plp.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/articles/226226187-Projects-Cognitive-Skills-Grading

Are teachers working with students on work habits and skills?

During mentoring time, teachers meet with students individually to encourage habits of success.  Habits of success include skills such as goal setting, notetaking, persisting when there are challenges, shifting strategies when something isn’t working, organization, prioritizing, and many others.

How is typing taught or practiced?

As of right now, there is no formal typing instruction at the middle school level.  However, students often type answers to their assignments on the computer, so they are regularly practicing typing skills.

How are teachers addressing spelling and grammar?

Grammar is taught through Focus Areas in the PLP.  Many students have already passed Punctuation 1 in English.  Teachers are also reinforcing communication skills such as spelling and grammar through feedback in project checkpoints.

 

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