ICARE – Mentoring - Everyone needs support from people outside of their homes. Mr. and Mrs. Ramnytz loved me very much when I was growing up but it was the people who took an interest in me outside of my home that helped me get to where I am today. You cannot put a measurement on how important it is for an individual to have support outside of the home. The other adults in my life who did not have to take time with me but chose to, had a significant impact in my life. The relationships that developed were lifelong and still impact me today. In my younger days, I did not want to disappoint my parents or my mentors. When my parents weren’t around to keep me in line, my mentors stepped in to get me back on track. I still communicate with them today and can call them my friends. When I speak to them about how much they have helped me through the years, they always let me know that they received as much from this relationship as I received from them. My goal as Superintendent is to have as many students in the BCSD as we possibly can have this kind of support system outside of their homes.
Currently in the Barberton City schools we have a group from the University of Akron that received a grant called The Community Connectors grant for mentoring students at the high school. Barberton community members and students from The University of Akron mentor our students under this grant. To help support and increase mentoring, we recently have involved the ICARE Mentoring program sponsored by The United Way. We have an ICARE representative Sarah Palace who works exclusively out of Barberton High School. Her job is to help the BCSD recruit and train new mentors. My goal is to have 50 more mentors on board by the end of the year.
All mentors go through an extensive background check and get exclusive training and support on how to be a mentor through ICARE Mentoring. All we will ask of our mentors is one hour a week to meet with a student and to be that person who they do not want to disappoint. The mentoring takes place in the schools and during school time. Please consider being that person that takes an interest in a Barberton student’s life. It will have an immense impact on the student and you. We will have a mentor recruitment fair on May 2nd at BHS or you can contact Sarah Palace, at Barberton High school. If you ever have any questions or concerns do not hesitate to call me.
The Importance of a Strong Vocabulary
One of The Barberton City School District’s goals is to strengthen our student’s knowledge base which will begin with vocabulary. If our students have a stronger understanding of words, they will become stronger readers and writers. The new state mandated tests have increased in the rigor of content and vocabulary. Our teachers and curriculum department have been working extremely hard to develop lists of words for each subject and each grade level that will be mastered and built upon from year to year until graduation. The Barberton City School District has just launched our district-wide vocabulary website. Please visit this site at barbertonschools.org. We realize the importance of an advanced vocabulary to a student’s education. We have created a consistent and measureable vocabulary platform where each subject area has academic terms that need to be mastered. Teachers, parents and students are encouraged to explore the site and use it frequently. There are slide decks, word lists and flashcards for key vocabulary words that students should know based on their grade level. Together with our parents support, we can make sure our students have mastered each grade level word bank and create stronger students, communicators, and leaders.
Our understanding of what we read and hear is determined by the strength of our vocabulary. Improving ones vocabulary is one of the most important academic investments a person can make, however, it is often disregarded. Most people these days use slang words and simple phrases when they speak and write. A strong vocabulary is sometimes overlooked and is considered to be unimportant. Young people who are looking to advance themselves in the (Three E’s- Enrollment, Enlistment, and Employment) need to be careful about their choice of words. A strong vocabulary will improve their communication skills and make them a more convincing candidate no matter what path they choose. Attaining a strong vocabulary begins in early childhood and continues throughout a lifetime. Whether we realize it or not, every time we speak, the language that we use will let others know how educated, competent, and successful we are. Therefore, it is not surprising that studies have shown that a strong vocabulary is directly linked to success and income potential.
Benefits of a strong vocabulary are:
- Grants you greater respect and credibility - When you use a stronger vocabulary, people will start to pay more attention to you and begin to follow your lead.
- Improves your communication and equips you to easily express your ideas - Having the right words to express your ideas effectively will make a difference in getting your point across.
- Improves your writing – You will create the impression you intend in your emails and letters.
- Improves your ability to earn high grades at school or college – You will be writing so well that your grades will likely improve.
- Improves your confidence with words and conversation – You will reduce the amount of stuttering and stammering for the right word and be able to make your point boldly and clearly without losing others’ interest.
- Improves your score on tests such as the SAT & ACT – You will have greater confidence with an advanced vocabulary when taking these type of tests.
- Improves your spelling
- Empowers you with advanced reading and comprehension skills –You will be able to understand the words and concepts in most everything you read.
- Improves opportunities for promotion and career progression – It has been proven by numerous studies that a good vocabulary is a strong predictor of career success. Having this knowledge will give you a distinct edge over your competition.