Twenty-two Madison Academy students gave up their spring break to travel half way across the country to Houston in order to serve strangers. Although Hurricane Harvey hit six months ago, there are still people displaced and front lawns are still littered with flood damaged debris waiting to be hauled away. The needs are overwhelming in the 4 th largest city in the U.S., with one of the largest homeless populations in the country.
Our team volunteered at shelters, food banks, dementia treatment centers, meal delivery services, soup kitchens, and many other places. The goal for the trip was to get out of our comfort zones, and that we did! Whether it was doing laundry for a homeless lady, delivering lunch to an at-risk preschooler or teaching a teenager to do a two-high at the government funded housing project, comfort zones were busted!
The trip also included a stop at SWAU where our students were able to worship on a college campus and get a feel for college life. A quick visit to the Alamo, a Spurs game and a boat ride at the Riverwalk in San Antonio rounded out our trip.
More than 30 students and faculty gathered in the gazebo yesterday from 10 AM to 10:17 AM to remember the 17 students killed in Parkland High School. They prayed for the families of the teenagers who lost their lives and for the high school students and staff who are still coping and recovering from the tragedy. Our students prayed for a hedge of protection around Madison Academy and that God would keep the forces of evil that would do harm, away from our campus. They thanked God for a cohesive, inclusive school community, and asked, and then prayed for their peers. Thank you Parker Luellen and Kendra Miller for initiating, organizing and leading this prayer vigil. You are Inspired Seekers, Empowered Scholars, and Devoted Servants.
The teachers at Madison Academy like to try new things. This school year, the schedule was swapped around so first period was a time for classes that made students move or create (fitness, band, handbells, newspaper, etc.). It was a hit. Second semester the teachers wanted to continue this style, but offer a few more project-based classes, one being web development the other public relations 101.
A project-based class combines real-world skills with class concepts to find solutions to their long-term class project. For PR 101 that means bringing back and planning the Neely’s Bend 5K.
The students, being mentored by Vicki Anderson and Taleah Valles-Peters, are doing everything. From creating the website to the flyers, courting sponsors to promoting to runners, this class is incredibly hands-on and the students are learning practical skills that will take them far in the workplace.
The students wanted this race to benefit more than just the Madison Campus community. That’s why the race is benefiting two causes, Madison Academy work-study scholarship and the 100 Club of Nashville. The 100 club, created by local Madison business owners, aids police officers and firefighters who are traumatically injured or lose their lives in the line of duty.
“This class gives me the opportunity to come out of my shell.” Stated Leo, a sophomore in the class, “Never before would I have had the chance to speak in front of the chamber of commerce or meet so many interesting people in our community. I can’t wait to see how many people will come out to support this 5K.”
Sign-up today at www.neelysbend5k.com
-Hannah Cerbasi, Sophomore and Taleah Valles-Peters
What is project-based learning? And why is everyone talking about it? Project-based learning (PBL) is a teaching style that has students combine real-world skills with subject area concepts to find solutions for their long-term class project. Madison Academy incorporates this teaching style in a few of their classes, including Public Relations 101.
In Public Relations 101 students’ core project is planning the Neely’s Bend 5K, which benefits the Madison Academy work-study scholarship program, as well as the 100 Club of Nashville, a local community charity.
The students begin by learning about the foundations of public relations and how to create a strategy to effectively engage the community as participants and sponsors. They practice skills in communication, collaboration, creativity and critical-thinking. Activities include preparing and giving a speech at the Madison-Rivergate Chamber of Commerce, designing flyers and posters for the race and learning how to market using social media platforms. This is just the beginning; their skills will ultimately be tested at the April 22 event. Want to be part of it? Sign-up here.