News & Announcements - Horizon Academy - Page 4


The Giving Tree

December 17, 2020

The Giving Tree Horizon Academy students are giving back to the Kansas City community. This year, Horizon Academy has implemented a new incentive system called Kickboard. Students earn Kickboard points throughout the week. If students meet their points goal, they can earn rewards, such as an extra snack, a pajama party for their classroom, or even lunch with a teacher.  Starting this Fall, students were given a new option, to use their points to give to a local charity. Horizon Academy students nominated Unleashed Pet Rescue as their charity of choice. Students can now choose whether to redeem their hard-earned…

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Culturally Responsive Repertoire in Music Education

December 14, 2020

By Andi Meyer, Fine Arts Instructor  Educators at Horizon Academy and across the country are working to make sure their curriculum is culturally responsive. One of my specialty areas, Music Education, is undergoing a significant transformation as teachers and scholars work to uncover songs with racist or derogatory terms, questionable meanings, and questionable origin. In this blog post, I’d like to provide you with a look into some of the research that has been conducted on songs with a questionable past.  In May 2014, Theodore R. Johnson III, who is a writer, Naval officer, and former White House Fellow, published…

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Faculty Spotlight: Alana Seidenberg

November 9, 2020

Alana Seidenberg has learned through her years of experience that the way an educator communicates to their students with diagnosed learning disabilities needs to be explicit, direct and sometimes broken down. “Typical learners have the initiative to look and explore, but our students need you to break it down for them and they need practice with the tools you've provided,” she said.  Alana Seidenberg came to Horizon Academy from the Schefa School in New York City. The Schefa School is much like Horizon Academy in that it specifically educates students with diagnosed learning disabilities, like dyslexia. Seidenberg is currently a…

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Igniting Real-World Understanding in a 2020 Classroom

November 4, 2020

Igniting Real-World Understanding in a 2020 Classroom By Gabi Guillory-Welsh On Halloween night, I saw an incredibly elaborate “2020 Dumpster Fire” costume, complete with dancing flames, graffiti, and two giant dumpster lids flapping in the breeze. While 2020 has been a memorable, stressful, and traumatic year due to a world-altering pandemic, political discord, and reckoning with racial injustice, there has never been a more crucial time to bring real life into the classroom. The world can seem like a scary place, but it is made far less scary when students are immersed in an educational environment that normalizes tough conversations…

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Faculty Spotlight: Brenna Watson

October 12, 2020

Before coming to Horizon Academy, Brenna Watson was a Special Education Resource Teacher in the public school system. In 2019, Horizon Academy visited her school to host a Learning Disability Simulation. “It was so powerful to see my colleagues experience what some of my students were living every day,” Watson said. Naturally, her personal philosophy on how to educate students with learning disabilities aligned with Horizon Academy’s mission and vision.  Watson came to Horizon Academy in 2020 as a homeroom teacher, where she is an active part of educating students and implementing the tools and strategies she knows they need…

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SOARing Across America

September 29, 2020

By Michael Chamberlain, PE Teacher 10,714.18 miles. This is the distance between all 48 capitals in the mainland of the United States. This year, my challenge for students is to see if we can walk/run this distance collectively. Each Monday and Thursday, classes pace themselves to work towards milestone goals. Students are awarded a sneaker to display on their locker for each milestone met. The first sneaker is awarded at 10 miles, then at 25 miles, and every 25 miles thereafter. Classes are also competing to collect the coveted Silver Sneakers. These Silver Sneakers are earned once the class completes…

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Faculty Spotlight: Gricelda Garcia

September 1, 2020

“I want to be a positive influence for students, a cheerleader, helping them to reach their full potential,” says Horizon Academy teacher, Gricelda Garcia. Garcia was deeply impacted by her teachers growing up and the care they put into her education. She wants to positively impact her students in a similar way, by helping them develop a love for learning. Garcia began her teaching career at Fort Leavenworth Unified School District, where she taught elementary for 11 years. There, she saw many students with learning disabilities struggle with the curriculum. “I know how hard it can be for students with…

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American Sign Language for the Dyslexia Student

August 7, 2020

American Sign Language for the Dyslexia Student By Rachel Denning, Horizon Academy Orton-Gillingham Coach and Instructor Did you know that American Sign Language (ASL) is not just a gestured version of English? It is actually a complete language of its own, with unique rules of pronunciation, word order, and grammatical markers. For this reason, many schools, including Horizon Academy, offer ASL as an option for earning foreign language credits. By studying ASL, students not only learn to communicate using a new language, they also learn about a different culture. Students begin to appreciate the unique characteristics of the Deaf community!…

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Importance of Math Movement

July 6, 2020

Math + movement = Success Engaging both the mind and body Emily Staten, Lower School Teacher Imagine you’re a teacher who must cover countless math standards within a school year and your math period is the last hour of the day. By the time math class rolls around, students can’t help but feel exhausted. So what’s a teacher to do? The answer is simple, let the students move, and I’ll explain why. Movement breaks are needed in order to wake up the brain, and when you pair both movement and numeracy something magical happens. The directionality found in skip counting,…

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What’s That Word?

June 4, 2020

What’s That Word?  Alli Caplinger, Speech and Language Pathologist Understanding words around us is essential to meaningful communication, cognitive development, and is one of the critical pieces to reading acquisition (National Reading Pane, 2001). As stated by Rupley, Logan, and Nichols (1998/1999), ”Vocabulary knowledge is the glue that holds stories, ideas, and content together making comprehension accessible.” Visualize students with language impairments, especially those with vocabulary deficits, as tourists in another country. They may be listening to the foreign language spoken around them but are unable to find meaning in what they are hearing. As the trip goes on, they…

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