Class Notes Logo
Issue No. 13
Spring 2009

The Baltimore Curriculum Project (BCP) is a nonprofit organization that operates five public charter schools in East Baltimore. BCP transforms underperforming high-poverty schools into high-performing charter schools by implementing research-based instructional methods, customized professional development, performance monitoring, and other key program supports.

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If you have any questions or comments, please e-mail: bcpinfo@baltimorecp.org

 
In This Edition:
 

 

BCP NEWS

 

Interview: MSU Distinguished Professor William Schmidt
Interview by Dr. Donald Crawford, BCP Director of Academics

  spacerDr. William Schmidt

spacerspacer

Dr. William Schmidt, Michigan State University Distinguished Professor of Education & Statistics

Dr. William Schmidt is a Michigan State University Distinguished Professor of Education and Statistics.

He is currently co-director of the Education Policy Center, co-director of the US-China Center for Research on Educational Excellence and co-director of the Promoting Rigorous Outcomes in Mathematics and Science Education (PROM/SE) project.

Minnesota’s fourth graders’ performance on the Trends in International Math and Science Study (TIMSS) earned them a ranking of fifth in the world. Minnesota’s success is attributed to state math standards adopted in 1997 and revised in 2003 that you helped create. What is so different about these standards and what was your role in creating them?

In 1995, when the first TIMSS was given, Minnesota participated and their performance was very lackluster, like the United States.

At that time, Minnesota simply didn’t have any state standards, unlike many other states. Without standards of what was expected, the amount of time given to mathematics was on the short side. Some places it was half an hour daily. Some places it may have been an hour—but not necessarily every day of the week.

By 1997, Minnesota came out with the first version of their standards and they asked me and my colleagues to look at them. We compared their standards to our international benchmarking of standards and we made suggestions.

The initial Minnesota standards were typical, a “mile wide and an inch deep” and not very coherent. Their eighth grade standards were mostly about arithmetic, not rigorous and not up to international standards. We gave them feedback.

Minnesota kept working on their standards. They came to us with a version around 2000 for more feedback.
They revised some more and in 2003 they came out with the current version.

By the 2003 version there were many fewer topics at a given grade level. There was much greater coherence.
It fit together, it was logical, and by 8th grade they were basically pushing the international curriculum of algebra and geometry.

Minnesota had put together standards that were more rigorous and coherent than a lot of other state standards are today. Our model of coherence, which we use for our international benchmarking, reflects what the top achieving countries do, that is, which topics they cover in which grades.

In doing our analysis, we find there are a lot of places where state standards were covering topics that were really what I call “before their time.” You can’t really cover these topics because the background in mathematics that’s necessary has not been covered or is being simultaneously covered. The children don’t really have a chance of learning these topics. I call it clutter for short.

In the fourth grade in 1995, as reported by Minnesota teachers, about 50% of the school year was covering this clutter and only about a third of the school year was focusing on developing concepts of number (basic place value and whole number operations)—which is the main topic that should be covered thoroughly in fourth grade.

In 2007, the same teaching force essentially had only 4% clutter and spent almost two-thirds of the school year on developing concepts of number. That’s much more consistent with what is done internationally.

The eighth grade Minnesota teachers in ’95 had somewhere around 40% clutter and spent only about 10% of the year on algebra coverage. Most recently in 2007 they had reduced clutter to about 2% and were spending about 50% of their school year on algebra.

So it looks like the standards were taken seriously, had an impact on what the teachers taught, and correspondingly, as you would expect, that was related to their performance.

Minnesota’s improvement by the time of the 2007 TIMSS was really remarkable. Their fourth graders, who would be the ones that studied their first four years under their new standards, got a score that put them just below the top achieving countries. Minnesota’s gain over the twelve year span from ‘95 to ‘07 was three times that of the US as a whole.

I think that focused and coherent standards are a big part of the story. The other part of the story is that they also probably doubled the amount of time given to mathematics from where it had been in 1995.

Not a lot of educators understand the importance of a focused math curriculum or the value of waiting to address certain topics until later years. How did you achieve a consensus for this dramatic change in the math standards?

This is a credit to Minnesota. They actually took the data that we had from our international benchmarking of math standards, treated it seriously, asked for our critique, changed, asked for critique again, and changed again.

I don’t know their motivation for sure. The business community is strongly engaged in this process. They do have a strong non-governmental organization, SciMathMN (www.scimathmn.org) made up of businesses and organizations that support education and that has been a real push in addition to the people within the state department.

Do the Minnesota standards recommend or require certain textbooks?

No, I don’t recommend any textbooks. For one thing, none of them are perfect. There are some that are better than others. I think that’s not the issue.

The curriculum or the standards, if they’re done in a coherent fashion, should set the road map that defines in what sequence things should be taught. The textbook then should simply be bent, twisted, and torn apart and put into the right order.

So people need to take whatever book they’re using and use it wisely, being led by the coherent standards, not by what’s in the textbook.

How do you ensure that the test and the standards are aligned?

In another few months we are going to do another wave of analyses on the Minnesota data. We’re going to analyze how much the Minnesota state assessment links with their standards and with the TIMSS.

We’ll have a good answer to that question in the near future.

Recently Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley tasked the Maryland State Board of Education with moving toward internationally competitive standards in math and science. What words of caution, advice or encouragement would you have for a state trying to develop a set of rigorous, coherent and focused math standards?

Don’t get caught up in the clichés and what appear to be the simplistic solutions. It really takes very serious effort to look at the actual standards and their coherence. That means you have to have people who deeply understand mathematics and who also understand classrooms.

There’s enough data and enough wisdom that we’ve gained from all of these analyses to give us a pretty good idea of what standards should look like.

Any state, Maryland included, that wants to do this needs to take the analysis seriously. They just can’t pretend that they can just move three things around in the standards and somehow now they’ll be internationally competitive.
You have to look at it seriously along all three important characteristics: the focus, the coherence and the rigor.

Some states have just cut out a bunch of topics—but they cut out the wrong ones. They cut what’s really critical to bridging, for example, between whole numbers and fractions and fractions and decimals. The stuff that looks at the relationships and the properties gets dropped out.

In getting to greater focus they’ve diminished coherence.

The other thing we see is making a quick fling to making Algebra One an eighth grade course for everyone. Well if you look carefully internationally, there isn’t an Algebra One in eighth grade. Instead you see algebra, in gradually increasing complexity, throughout sixth, seventh and eighth grades.

I have a much simpler solution. If this nation would get off its duff and have national standards which would be developed by a national group of experts, Maryland wouldn’t have to confront this and fifty states wouldn’t have to reenact the scenario in different places.

That’s my bottom line. I don’t see how we’re ever going to get there until we sort of bite that bullet. When I say national, I don’t mean the federal government should get involved in this at all. I think it should be a quasi-independent organization that’s formed by the states.

If you bring the right people together it’ll be done right. I was involved in re-doing the Michigan standards which are pretty good. What I did is convened three research mathematicians, two math educators and myself. We sat in a room, stopped arguing about ideology, and started confronting it, and it works.

You can get those people to agree. I think that’s what Maryland needs to do and I think that’s what we need to do nationally.

What is a reasonable time frame for a State to establish new standards and how long will it take to impact classroom instruction?

We’ve seen the Minnesota story. When you finally get the standards right, it starts to show up for the kids that received all their math instruction under those new standards—so after roughly four years the impact of the new standards will show up in the scores of fourth graders.

It can happen relatively quickly. I don’t think we’re talking decades or anything like that. How quickly you can do it depends on accepting the fact that there are some pretty good models out there—you don’t have to start from scratch.

It doesn’t have to be a uniquely Maryland set of standards. There is a fairly common base of what the top achieving countries do. If one simply looks there to begin the process, not necessarily to copy it, it doesn’t take that long.

I would bet you could put a decent set of standards together within half a year if you got serious about it.
It is such a serious issue. I’d think that’s what any state that really wants to do this, should do.

Maryland officials are considering two different international math assessments, the TIMSS and the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA). Do you consider one of these two measures to be a better assessment of math instruction?

It depends on the purpose. They both give good information but about different things.

PISA is a study of 15-year-olds, so it is a study of what they know by the time that compulsory education ends in most European and OECD countries.

If you want to know what the cumulative outcome of a system is for certain practical kinds of skills, like whether you can read graphs and tables, then PISA does a good job.

If you want to study what children learn in school, then TIMSS is the better way to go because it is a school-based study.

So it depends. I think for developing good standards and things of that sort probably TIMSS is a bit better.

 

Accenture Helps BCP with Project Impact

Accenture logo

During the fall Accenture completed Project Impact, an intensive volunteer-based project designed to help BCP with organizational development and assessment.

In an effort to “Impact lives” Accenture embarked on this project to recommend a strategy for BCP that would allow us to more efficiently and effectively achieve our goal to better serve and improve the outcomes of underprivileged youth in Baltimore City and measure those results.

Accenture’s work helped BCP identify our organizational strengths and weaknesses and think about ways to better manage our day to day work to enhance internal communications and support our mission.

Using the Accenture work as a starting point, BCP has continued the process of articulating our priorities including defining the pillars of a BCP school, strategies for achieving our goals and methods for measuring progress.

This work has been essential in distilling where we are as an organization and where we need to be.

Accenture is a global management consulting, technology services and outsourcing company. Combining unparalleled experience, comprehensive capabilities across all industries and business functions, and extensive research on the world’s most successful companies, Accenture collaborates with clients to help them become high-performance businesses and governments.

We would like to thank the Accenture consultants who have so generously volunteered their time and expertise: Christine Ambrose, Vanessa Godshalk, Brittany Normand, Megan O’Keefe, and Matt Sitek.

 

 

spacerCITY SPRINGS SCHOOL NEWS

 

BCP/City Springs After-School Program

The BCP/City Springs 21st Century Community Learning Center program is wrapping up another exciting year.

Activities this year included tutoring, Girl Scouts, Basketball, Stepping, Food for Life, Hip Hop Poetry, Arts and Crafts, Ceramics, Band and Karate.

MLK Day
On January 19th the City Springs Steppers, the City Springs Band, and the Baltimore Freedom Academy Band participated in the ninth annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. parade for the first time.

Led by Nadine Jackson, Sharone Henderson, and Jonathan Howard, students braved the frigid, snowy weather, marching from Eutaw Street along Martin Luther King Boulevard to Baltimore Street.

The City Springs Band and Baltimore Freedom Academy Band practiced together twice a week for four weeks to prepare for this exciting event.

The Parade featured schools, organizations and community groups that strive to keep Dr. King’s dream and legacy alive.

City Springs Debate Team
The City Springs Debate Team, led by Janae Toulson and Devin Stevenson, competed in their first Baltimore Urban Debate League Tournament on January 17th.

Congratulations to the following students for helping to bring home eight wins: N’Dia Langhorn, Dakota Krommer, AyAnna Saunders, Foster Jones and Myesha Scott.

Girl Scouts
The Girl Scouts, led by Dorothy Glewwe and Elizabeth Bartholme, learned sign language and signed the song “Let Their Be Peace on Earth” at the spring program on May 8th. They also participated in a cotillion on May 2nd.

Basketball League
The middle school boys basketball team remains undefeated with a record of 10-0. The girls basketball team has demonstrated outstanding spirit. We look forward to expanding the girls league next year.

Matthew Forrest, Kyle Garrison, David Engel led the basketball teams.

Drug-Free Soul Steppers
This year the City Springs Drug-Free Soul Steppers performed at the Holiday Program, a local nursing home, and supported the boys basketball team during half-time at their Saturday games.

The team is comprised of thirty-two students in grades two through eight. They practice five days a week under the leadership of Nadine Jackson and Sharone Henderson.

Ms. Jackson says the name of the team comes from her “many years of stepping out against drugs.”

Food for Life
Aisha Prioleau taught students in the Food for Life program how food affects their minds and bodies as they prepared and enjoyed healthy recipes from around the world.

Food for Life is based on the award winning Food is Elementary curriculum, designed by the Food Studies Institute.
Children learn about healthy eating patterns so that they can protect their health through diet as they grow older.
The students presented a cooking demonstration at the spring program.

Hip Hop Poetry and Dance
On March 24th City Springs students Foster Jones, Mykira Barnes, Candance Gough, and Brittany Burgess performed spoken word and hip-hop dance for a community meeting of the Citizens for Washington Hill.

Since the fall Victor Rodgers of Citizens for Washington Hill and City Springs English teacher Melanie Coleman have helped students develop their hip hop poetry and dance skills

Students were delighted to perform for Baltimore City Council President Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, who spoke at the meeting.

Kinji Scott, Executive Director of Citizens for Washington Hill, City Springs Principal Rhonda Richetta, local residents, and several City Springs teachers were also in attendance.

Special Thanks
Ms. Richetta, Ms. Newkirk and Ms. Thomas would like to give a special thanks to all of the After School staff who contributed to the program and invested their time and energy in our students.

Thank you to the Living Classrooms Foundation for providing a generous grant, which supported City Springs’ participation in the Baltimore Urban Debate League.

We would also like to thank the MSDE 21st Century Community Learning Center program and the Family League of Baltimore City for making this program possible.

Thank you to our partners:

Maryland 21st Century Community Learning Centers
Family League of Baltimore City
Baltimore City Government
Baltimore City Public Schools
MSDE
Living Classrooms Foundation logo
  Girl Scouts of America  

 

 

spacerCOLLINGTON SQUARE SCHOOL NEWS

 

Higher Achievement Selects Collington Square as Host Site

Higher Achivement Program Logo

Collington Square School has been selected as one of the host Higher Achievement schools for the 2009 launch.

Higher Achievement is a non-profit organization that provides middle school children from under served areas year-round academic enrichment programs and preparation for top high school placement.

Higher Achievement started in Washington, D.C. and for more than 30 years has invested in the potential of young people by operating academies that have proven to increase academic skills, grades and performance on standardized tests.

The program also boosts attendance and increases educational opportunities by giving participants the tools to enroll and succeed in rigorous high school classes.

Higher Achievement received generous grants from Atlantic Philanthropies and the Weinberg Foundation to open and operate its Achievement Center Academies in Baltimore City.

The program will begin in June 2009 with 60 fifth and sixth grade students from Collington Square, Dr. Rayner Browne Academy, Hampstead Hill Academy, City Springs School, East Baltimore Community School, Tench Tilghman Elementary/Middle School, and Fort Worthington.

Three components make up the year-round Higher Achievement model: (1) Summer Academy, (2) After-School Academy, and (3) High School Placement.
Summer Academy

The six-week summer academy operates from 8:00 am - 4:00 pm five days per week. A trained teaching staff conducts courses in literature, math, science, and social studies. Elective courses include foreign language, leadership, photography, and dance. Scholars also participate in weekly field trips and a 3-day, overnight college visit.

After-School Academy
The 24-week after-school academy offers academic enrichment activities three days per week from 3:30 pm - 8:00 pm. The program includes rigorous classes in literature, mathematics, and technology; homework assistance; and multicultural studios such as Afro-Caribbean music, sculpture, and chess.

High School Placement
The High School Placement Program helps scholars identify and apply to selective public and private schools.
The program provides test preparation classes, application workshops, interview coaching, and support to families as they navigate the high school admissions process.

We would like to thank Higher Achievement for selecting Collington Square and for expanding their program to the Baltimore area.

For more information visit: www.higherachievement.org.

 

ECSM’s Club at Collington Square
Reprinted with permission from the ECSM e-newsletter

Self portrait of Collington Square School student.  
Self-portrait by Club at Collington student Dontae. spacer

The youth at The Club at Collington Square spent several weeks this winter studying American history, the Presidential Inauguration and the meaning of freedom.

The students wrote personal reflections about the meaning of freedom. The following excerpt is one example of many fine essays:

“... Freedom is a simple and strong word. It is a word that can cause a war or a word that can cause world peace.

"When I think of the word freedom, I see Martin Luther King... Whether it is known or not, everyone has an important responsibility in maintaining America’s freedom.

"My responsibility as an American is to be a good citizen, go to school, become someone successful, and contribute to America’s freedom by voting.” Juwon, 7th grade.

The students combined this study unit with an art project based on the work of Shepard Fairey’s famous poster of President Barack Obama. Students were asked to add a word that expressed their view of the future.

The Club, operated by Episcopal Community Services of Maryland, is an academic and community arts-based after school and summer camp program for youth ages 5 - 14 living in the Collington Square neighborhood.

For more information about ECSM, to volunteer, or to make a donation please visit www.ecsm.org.

 

 

HAMPSTEAD HILL ACADEMY NEWS

 

City Awards $100K Grant for Early Learning Wing

  Mayor Dixon, CEO Alonso, Matt Hornbeck and Muriel Berkeley
  (l to r) BCPS CEO Andres Alonso, Mayor Sheila Dixon, Hampstead Hill Principal Matt Hornbeck, and BCP President Muriel Berkeley.

On January 9, 2009 Baltimore City awarded Hampstead Hill Academy a $100,000 Charter School Facilities Improvement grant to help fund the school’s Early Learning Wing renovation.

Hampstead Hill Academy’s facility was originally designed to serve students in kindergarten through fifth grade.

Today the school serves grades Pre-K through eight and enrollment has increased from 388 students four years ago to more than 550 this year.

The $2.5 million Early Learning Wing renovation scheduled for this summer will create a nurturing learning environment for Pre-K and kindergarten students.

The project includes larger early learning classrooms equipped with restrooms, a new art room, and a state-of-the-art media and community center.

We would like to thank Baltimore City for supporting Hampstead Hill Academy.

Support the Early Learning Wing Renovation
If you would like to support the Early Learning Wing project please contact Principal Matt Hornbeck at
410-396-9146, donated online at Support Early Learning Wing or send your check to:

Baltimore Curriculum Project
c/o HHA Early Learning Wing
2707 E. Fayette Street
Baltimore, MD 21224

 

MSA Raffle & Rally a Smash
Reprinted with permission from the Hampstead Hill Academy newsletter

The Maryland State Department of Education holds Hampstead Hill Academy, like all Maryland schools, accountable for student performance and attendance.

In an effort to encourage students and their families to come to school on time and show good effort during testing weeks, HHA held a rally and three separate raffles.

The MSA rally was held outside on the blacktop. Students in grades three through five watched our middle school students cheer and “step.” Then, they voted on the best performance.

The 8th grade performers were the big winners. Special thanks to Ms. D. Smith for her leadership in organizing the rally.

HHA also held separate raffles for grades one and two, three through five, and six through eight. Students earned raffle tickets for arriving at school on time and for good effort and conduct. Teachers could award an additional ticket each day at their discretion.

Grand prizes included six bicycles (with helmets and locks) for students in grades one through five and beanbag chairs full of gift cards for middle school students. Dozens of students won big prizes, but every student got to take something home.

Thank you to Amuse Toys of Fells Point for donating 8 Rainbow Art packets for children. Thank you also to Jonathan Swann and Lindsay Giel for their help getting the prizes together.

Geri Swann was the overall coordinator of the raffles, and we thank her for pulling it off without a hitch.
Special kudos to students in the 6th and 8th grades for having perfect attendance on each MSA testing day.

 

Mulan Jr. Captivates

Mulan Jr. performance

On March 8th families and friends of HHA were treated to an inspired performance of Mulan Jr.

Set in ancient China, this stage adaptation of Disney’s Mulan is a heart warming celebration of culture, honor and a fighting spirit.

We would like to thank the cast and crew who spent countless hours after school and on Saturday mornings preparing for this performance.

Special thanks to the parents and the following teachers for their support: Michelle Kaminaris (Producer), Wayne Larrivey (Director), Lisa Free (Choreographer), and Deb Smith (Musical Director).

 

Video of Hampstead Hill Academy

In the Fall BCP recorded a video of Hampstead Hill Academy students and teachers in action. View the video below:

 

 

RAYNER BROWNE ACADEMY NEWS

 

Mr. Whitten is a “Hero in Our Midst”
By O’bette Jamision, Dr. Rayner Browne Academy Community School Coordinator, and Larry Schugam

Mr. Whitten and basketball team

Art on Purpose has selected Mr. Michael Whitten and eleven other Baltimore City Public Schools teachers to be honored through their “Heroes in Our Midst” project.

The Walters Art Museum’s forthcoming Heroes! Mortals and Myths in Ancient Greece exhibition was the catalyst for this project.

In conjunction with The Walters’ exhibition of Ancient Greek art on view October 11, 2009 through January 3, 2010, Art on Purpose will hold a pair of exhibitions: “Twenty Years of Wandering” and “1,000 Ships.”

“Twenty Years of Wandering” refers to the travels of Odysseus and will feature art and stories from Baltimore’s homeless and immigrant populations.

“1,000 Ships” refers to the legendary beauty of Helen of Troy. The exhibit will feature art and stories of heroes from Baltimore City Public School communities whose inner beauty and commitment to the community launched “1,000 ships.”

Mr. Whitten has demonstrated this inner beauty and commitment as he takes on a variety of roles at Dr. Rayner Browne Academy. He is a teacher, coach, chauffeur, mentor, disciplinarian, and leader. Mr. Whitten is one of those people who is rarely written about.

He is a strong man of color doing positive work in the hood of East Baltimore. He has a tremendous impact on the students of Dr. Rayner Browne Academy. As a basketball coach he has pulled young men and women off the street.

When students pleaded for a basketball team, Mr. Whitten organized students and found area schools to participate. When someone was needed to lead students in the JROTC program at Baltimore Polytechnic Institute, Mr. Whitten stepped forward.

Mr. Whitten stays after-school to travel with students across town so they can learn leadership skills. He works with Poly cadets to make sure they can meet at Rayner Browne to help his students prepare for upcoming drill competitions.

When volunteers are needed for community projects such as revitalizing a vacant lot, Mr. Whitten is there. His Saturdays are spent digging holes to plant trees in the community and riding miles to sports events to support his students’ dreams.

Mr. Whitten is the gentleman that many think is extinct. He is a man who will live on for many years to come in the minds, ideas, hearts and souls of a generation said to be lost in the hood.

As part of the “Heroes in Our Midst” project students in the after-school ceramics program will be collecting stories from students, staff, and faculty that describe what Mr. Whitten means to them.

The stories will be combined with ceramic artwork to be displayed in the “1,000 Ships” exhibit. On Sunday October 25, 2009 from 2:00 pm - 5:00 pm the Walters Art Museum will hold a community event to celebrate the exhibition and honor Mr. Whitten and the other local heroes.

We would like to thank Mr. Whitten for his commitment to the students at Dr. Rayner Browne.

We would also like to thank the following people and organizations for making the “Heroes in Our Midst” project possible: Peter Bruun, Larry Friend, Marnie Keith, Michael Sarbanes, Deb Silcox, Art on Purpose, The Walters Art Museum, and Baltimore City Public Schools.

About Art on Purpose
Art on Purpose provides art workshops, exhibitions, and programs in direct support of education, social justice, and community service. (www.artonpurpose.org)

 

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WOLFE STREET ACADEMY NEWS

 

Roots & Shoots: Wolfe Street Students Feed the Homeless

Student making sandwiches for homeless shelter

Since January 2009 Wolfe Street fourth grade teacher Ms. Maura Colleen Farrall and students in grades three through five have been providing lunches for hundreds of homeless people each month.

Students from Ms. Farrall’s regular day-time class and the after-school club participate. The students chose to engage in this project as part of their Roots & Shoots After-School Club.

Through the program they are encouraged to work on three projects: one to help people, one to help animals and one to help the Earth.

When the students expressed an interest in providing food for the homeless Ms. Farrall taught a mini unit on nutrition and then let the kids choose a healthy menu.

They selected meat and cheese sandwiches on whole wheat bread, fresh fruit, a granola bar or crackers, a drink (water or real juice) and a sweet. When there is enough bread they also include peanut butter and jelly or other sandwiches.

MLK Day of Service
The Club started feeding the homeless on January 19, 2009 in honor of the Martin Luther King, Jr. National Day of Service.

Children and adult volunteers prepared the food and then walked to Beans and Bread, a homeless resource center run by St. Vincent de Paul, where they delivered over 300 lunches. They also handed out lunches to people on the streets along Broadway as they returned to school.

Since February students have prepared around 100 lunches once a month during their after school time. Ms. Farrall delivers the lunches the following morning during her planning period with the help of Wolfe Street Reading Teacher Melissa Jencks.

Suzanne Bailey of the Upper Fells Point Improvement Association acts as a community liaison for the project. She was a tremendous help getting donations for the January kick-off.

You Can Make a Difference
“The students are really excited and proud of the project,” says Ms. Farrall. “I constantly remind them that this was their idea and try to make sure they realize that they have the power to make a difference in this world.”

“We talk about how they have stopped someone from going hungry more than 600 times already. One student, Amber Y., suggested making cards for the clients who receive the lunches and she actually handed them out with us.

“It was amazing to see her smiling and the people she gave them to smiling. One man we gave food to on the street couldn’t believe the kids were from a public school. He said he never heard of a public school doing something like this.”

Food Donations from All Over
Food donations come from all over including people in the neighborhood and people who read about the program in the newspaper or on President Obama’s website.

They have even received donations from people in California, and one doctor from Sweden who worked at Hopkins years ago and read about the project on the Internet.

Dr. Jane Goodall is My Hero

roots and shoots logo

“My hero, Dr. Jane Goodall, inspired me to start the program,” says Ms. Farrall.

“She started the Roots & Shoots program to help inspire and empower children to change the world. I have had a group for many years. I first read about her in the sixth grade when a teacher who knew I loved animals gave me the book In the Shadow of Man.

“I started trying to contact Dr. Goodall while she was still in Africa. Last April fourth I finally met her.

“I organized a Roots &Shoots Educational fair with school leaders from all over the Maryland, Virginia, and DC areas. Dr. Goodall was the keynote speaker.”

Other Service Projects
Students in Ms. Farrall’s class have taken on two other service projects this year. Mark is in charge of a project to help animals by collecting change to donate to an animal shelter.

Ana is in charge of a project to help the Earth by creating posters to educate people about the consequences of polluting our watershed by dumping trash into street drains.

We would like to thank Ms. Farrall, Principal Mark Gaither, Suzanne Bailey, and Melissa Jencks for supporting the Roots & Shoots Program.

We would also like to thank the residents of Upper Fells Point and surrounding neighborhoods who have been so generous with their donations.

If you would like to volunteer or make a donation to the Wolfe Street Roots & Shoots program, please e-mail Ms. Farrall at gmfarrall@aol.com.

About Roots & Shoots
Roots & Shoots is the Jane Goodall Institute’s international environmental and humanitarian program for youth of all ages. For more information visit: www.rootsandshoots.org.

 


Questions or comments? Email bcpinfo@baltimorecp.org
Newsletter Editor: Larry Schugam

© 2009 Baltimore Curriculum Project
www.baltimorecp.org | 2707 E. Fayette Street | Baltimore, MD 21224 | 410-675-7000

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