Across Rhode Island and the country, students, teachers, and community mentors are dispelling this erroneous notion with extended learning opportunities (ELOs). ELOs provide an opportunity for students to learn outside of traditional school constraints (time and place) to expand upon classroom experiences, pursue personal academic interests, and explore potential careers. Community mentors support students’ real-world learning while teacher mentors ensure ELOs are rigorous and standards-aligned. In communities like Central Falls, Providence and Woonsocket, students are earning credit for the following extended learning experiences:
developing strong critical thinking, public speaking, and debate skills with the Rhode Island Urban Debate League;learning coding while creating applications for Android tablets and smart phones;building research and laboratory science skills while assisting in graduate-level research at Brown University; and many others.
Creating, supervising, and evaluating ELOs is difficult work for schools, but the benefits for students are undeniable. Students who complete ELOs develop greater educational focus along with skills in self-advocacy, communication, and time management. That sounds a lot like the type of student we want graduating from Blackstone Valley Prep High School, ready for the rigors of college and the world beyond!All in for Day 1!