Exciting news from the BCP Schools: City Springs Elementary/Middle School,
Govans Elementary School, Hampstead Hill Academy and Wolfe Street Academy.

BCP March 2016 Newsletter
In this issue:
BCP Hosts Winter Professional Development Conference
BCP Director of Academic Affairs Jon McGill
presents a workshop on Adolescent Behavior.
BCP's Winter Professional Development Conference on February 26, 2016 provided over 200 teachers from City Springs Elementary/Middle, Govans Elementary, Hampstead Hill Academy and Wolfe Street Academy with customized training.

Workshop topics included Adolescent Behavior: What the Research Tells Us; ESOL: Enhancements; Tough Kid Interventions - Grades PreK-5; Classroom Organization: Making the Classroom Space Your Own; Core Knowledge/Research and Instruction for PreK-2; Corrections; Arguments in Writing; and more.

The Winter PD Conference is part of BCP's comprehensive Professional Development Program, which includes a week-long Summer Training Institute for New Teachers, a monthly BCP Teacher Think Tank, and in-class coaching.
BCP Turns Out for BEC Action Night in Annapolis

Students, teachers and community members from Govans Elementary, Hampstead Hill Academy and Wolfe Street Academy (above) particpated in the BEC Action Night in Annapolis.
BCP had a strong showing at the Baltimore Education Coalition's Action Night in Annpolis on March 9, 2016.

Students parents, teachers and community members from Govans Elementary, Hampstead Hill Academy and Wolfe Street Academy joined 300 attendees to advocate for state education funding, full-day Pre-K, Community Schools, and new school facilities.

Two Hampstead Hill Academy students made compelling arguments to protect state education funding. One student explained that funding losses could lead to the elimination of critical extra-curricular program offered by organizations such as the Baltimore Urban Debate League.

The evening' speakers also included BCP Executive Vice President Larry Schugam, BEC Chair Frank Patinella (ACLU Education Reform Project), Karen DeCamp (Strong City Baltimore), Delegate Curt Anderson, Delegate Keith Haynes, Delegate Maggie McIntosh, Sharicca Bolden (Strong City Baltimore), Tenne Thrower (Strong City Baltimore), Kimberly Humphrey, Esq. (ACLU Education Reform Project), Kris Misage (Margaret Brent Elementary), Kellie Brown (Elev8 Baltimore), and Rick Gwynallen (Reservoir Hill Improvement Council).

Fox 45 Produces for PSA for BCP
WBFF Fox 45 PSA for BCP
WBFF Fox 45 PSA for BCP

WBFF FOX 45 is the lead media sponsor for "Are You Smarter than a BCP 5th Grader?" on April 21, 2016. BCP would like to thank Fox 45 and Sharon Wylie for producing this wonderful PSA starring BCP President Laura Doherty, Hampstead Hill Academy Assistant Principal John Paz, HHA Teacher Melissa Riorda and HHA student Kofi Kwaw.

Get your tickets for Are You Smarter than a BCP 5th Grader? today at: http://areyousmarter2016.eventbrite.com/
Partner Convening at City Springs Elementary/Middle School
Abby Baldwin talks about Community Schools
Child First Authority, City Springs Elementary/Middle and BCP hosted a Partner Convening on March 2, 2016 to recognize school partners and explore how they can work together to further enhance student learning at City Springs.

BCP would also like to recognize CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield, a key partner who was unable to attend this meeting. CareFirst has brought an array of partners and programs to City Springs including Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Greater ChesapeakeAmerican Heart Association Teaching Gardens and Girls on the Run.
Holistic Practice Makes Perfect at City Springs
Written by the Holistic Life Foundation
The Holistic Life Foundation (HLF) is an organization committed to nurturing the wellness of children and adults in underserved communities. Through a comprehensive approach which helps children develop their inner lives through yoga, mindfulness, and self-care, HLF works to deliver high-quality programs and curriculum to improve community well-being.
Each day, HLF practices an hour of yoga and mindfulness with the Upper School students at City Springs. We begin each class with basic breathing exercises and discuss any internal or external factors that have been causing stress in our lives or in the lives of the students.

After the discussion, we do a series of poses targeting certain aspects of the body in order to give the students a positive physical outlet. We end the class with a guided meditation. The guided meditation is used to help the students relax before going back to their normal day. The meditation is also used to help the student's focus on their scholastics. We also implement basic breathing exercises to regulate the students' emotions, mind-set, and focus throughout the school day. 
HLF instructors don't just stand at the head of the class and tell students which movements and yoga poses to make. They practice the actions with the students, showing and telling them at the same time. HLF believes that if students continue to practice and perfect these skills, they can significantly help our kids manage stress and control their emotions now and into adulthood! 
To find out more about Holistic Life visit http://hlfinc.org/
Restorative Circles Offer a Daily "Recharge" for
Govans After School Students
By Sarah Ceponis, Director, BCP 21st Century Community Learning Center at Govans Elementary

Every day at 4:15pm, students at Govans Elementary hear an announcement over the loud speaker, "Time to clean up whatever you're working on. The restorative circle topic to start thinking about today is....", followed by a hint about the day's discussion question. 

Students and staff of the Baltimore Curriculum Project's 21st Century Community Learning Center at Govans Elementary -- a program made possible by the Maryland State Department of Education -- have come to expect and enjoy their ten minutes to recharge and check in with one another between after-school academics and enrichment time.

In November, all after-school staff members received training in the fundamentals of Restorative Practices, a positive approach to conflict resolution that proactively builds relationships and a sense of community to prevent conflict and wrongdoing. Training was provided by Chella Drew, a Restorative Practices consultant and former Director of Restorative Practices at Hampstead Hill Academy.

Restorative Circles can be used proactively to develop relationships and build community or reactively to respond to wrongdoing, conflicts and problems. With everyone now used to the daily restorative circle, it is a habit that students look forward to. Circles provide a a time to think about and share whatever comes to mind around the daily question or "circle starter". They are a time to learn from and listen to one another. 

Questions of the day can range from why animals hibernate to standing up to a bully; from what type of person would make a good mayor to what you might do if you won the lottery, from how to be a good teammate to traveling the world.

Based on the day of the week, topics rotate among being community-themed, learning-themed, conflict resolution-themed, or simply "Fun Thursday"-themed.

All 90 students, from K through 5, tune in and talk about the same topic in their classrooms, and sometimes, conversations carry over to enrichment, the hallways, or dinner.

Using restorative circles daily, in a fun and structured way, allows after school students to get used to the goal of circles: everyone having their voice heard.

Regularly practicing their circle etiquette and skills with the whole class means that when circles are needed for other reasons-- mediation, misbehavior, or bullying-- students are prepared and ready to, again, make their voice heard, and listen to the voices of their classmates.


BCP brought Restorative Practices to its schools in 2006 through the generous support of OSI-Baltimore and the Goldsmith Family Foundation. All administrators and staff members were trained by the International Institute for Restorative Practices (IIRP), which continues to be a strong BCP partner.

For more information about IIRP visit: http://www.iirp.edu/
Govans Elementary Partners Host Community Forum

Over 40 teachers, staff, residents, and community partners attended the Govans School Design Community Forum on February 18th to share their thoughts on the planned rebuild or renovation of Govans Elementary

BCP would like to thank Kathleen Kelleher and Marie McSweeney Anderson of Loyola University Maryland's York Road Initiative and Celeste Perilla of Strong City Baltimore for organizing the forum. Special thanks to Karen DeCamp of Strong City Baltimore for giving an overview of the school design process. 
Hampstead Hill Academy Middle School History Fair
Hampstead Hill Academy students did a wonderful job presenting their projects at HHA's Middle School History Fair on March 4, 2016. Topics ranged from Archimedes to Joan of Arc. BCP staff members Laura Doherty, Jon McGill, Jeff Krick and Brenda Kahn joined HHA teachers as judges. Special thanks to HHA Teacher Amy Kosmer for organizing the fair and BCP Board member Bob Benjamin for serving as a judge.

HHA Students Participate in Citywide Shakespeare Festival

Four Hampstead Hill Academy students participated in the citywide student Shakespeare Festival at the Chesapeake Shakespeare Company on February 18, 2016. They were joined by students from Baltimore City College, Roland Park Elementary/Middle School and Augusta Fells Savage Institute of Visual Arts.

Jorge (Benedick) and Jordan (Beatrice), 7th grade students, presented a dramatic scene from Much Ado About Nothing. Madison (Nurse) and Shayla (Juliet), 8th grade students, presented a comedic scene from Romeo and Juliet.

The students did a fantastic job performing on a professional stage and received feedback from professional actors in the Chesapeake Shakespeare Company. We look forward to taking more students to this wonderful event next year.
Author and Former Raven Visits Wolfe Street Academy
Ms. Apple's 5th graders at Wolfe Street Academy recently enjoyed a visit with author and former Baltimore Ravens player Trevor Pryce. Thank you Mr. Pryce for coming to talk with our students about being an author.

Trevor Pryce is a retired NFL player and writer who's written for the New York Times and NBC.com. He's also developed television and movie scripts for Cartoon Network, Disney, and HBO, among others.

His most recent children's book is entitled An Army of Frogs.

BCP would like to thank Arlene Lee, Executive Director of the Governor's Office for Children, and Michael Huber, Family League of Baltimore Board Member, for visiting Wolfe Street Academy (WSA) on March 3, 2016 to learn about WSA's award-winning Community School strategy.

Special thanks to Jonathon Rondeau, President & CEO of the Family League of Baltimore, and Holly Gonzales, former Director of Systems Building for the Family League, for all they do to support the Community School Strategy and OST at WSA.

University of Maryland Social Work Community Outreach Service (SWCOS) serves as the Lead Community School Partner for WSA, thanks to a generous grant from the Family League. The after-school program, operated by the Baltimore Curriculum Project, is supported by generous grants from the Family League and the The Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation.
Baltimore Curriculum Project | 410-675-7000 | bcpinfo@baltimorecp.org | www.baltimorecp.org
Baltimore Curriculum Project, 2707 E. Fayette Street, Baltimore, MD 21224
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