Frequently Asked Questions

What is Growing Scholars?
Growing Scholars is a program designed to support first and second grade students making rapid growth during the academic school year.  All students will participate in "Thinking Lessons" with Audra Haveman, Growing Scholars teacher.  These classroom lessons will provide direct instruction with follow-up thinking tasks providing each student opportunity to practice various domains of higher-level thinking skills.  These higher-level thinking skills and activities are meant to engage learners to utilize their thinking brains in ways meant to challenge and encourage them as learners!

First grade students participating in the Growing Scholars program will participate in two summer camp opportunities, one in June and one in July.  These camps will serve to provide intellectual stimulation and keep kids excited about learning!

Second grade Growing Scholars students will not only participate with their class for enrichment "Thinking Lessons", but they will also receive supplemental instructional support, both in and out of the classroom, with the Growing Scholars teacher. 

Parents will be invited to attend quarterly parent information sessions. Newsletters will be sent home with all first and second grade students each time a new Thinking Lesson was presented in the classroom.
This newsletter is intended to share with families what each domain of higher-level thinking is, and how you can practice it at home.

By providing these challenging learning opportunities, Mahtomedi Public Schools seeks to encourage students to view themselves as scholars with a great academic future!

How are students identified as Growing Scholars?
Students are identified through performance assessments, rating scales, and MAP growth. Classroom teachers work with the Growing Scholars coordinator to identify these children.

Our goal is to provide challenging academic opportunities for students that are not already in advanced classes. Students are selected for the program based on large academic gains as well as evidence of creative thinking. The program also seeks students who demonstrate strong social and academic behaviors that show they may be ready for advanced work.

What will my student learn?
After first grade, students invited to participate in the Growing Scholars program attend Growing Scholars Summer Camp.  This camp provides an opportunity to practice a comprehensive learning approach around the following topics: Plants and Insects (June), and Transportation (July). Students will frame their learning by working with the concept of systems.  The camps are designed to provide rigorous instruction, in-house field experts, cross-district connections with other Scholars, field trips, a culminating "Celebration of Learning".
During their second grade school year, students will continue to participate in whole-class "Thinking Lessons" that emphasize higher-level thinking skills.  They will also receive supplemental instruction from the Growing Scholars teacher, both in and out of the classroom.  These meetings will continue to provide exposure to advanced learning and build upon the summer experience.

The goal is to provide students support as they become strong scholars.