Ready for the 2020-2021 School Year to Begin!

Tiberius, this beautiful Fresia is ready for school! The first day of the 2020-2021 school year begins Monday August 10th. Our first week of school will be unprecedented as some students will be video conferencing while others will be in the traditional classroom. The teachers are ready and prepared for this adventure.

New classes at MLA this year are Keyboarding and Content Reading. We will also return to a favorite, Zoology as well as a non-credited Math Lab where students can get extra assistance. Equine Science will look slightly different this year too. For safety reasons, part of our students will be taking Equine Science during terms one and two while the other students are in Keyboarding and Math Lab. At the beginning of Term 3, it will switch up and those who did not have Equine Science on their schedule will then be able to hang out with this amazing Fresia and have Equine Science for terms three and four. This will allow those students who took Equine Science in terms one and two to take Keyboarding and have use of the Math Lab.

This SHOUT OUT, goes to all of you parents who have supported the Parent-Teacher conferences this past year. We appreciate your patience and kindness during these pandemic times. Remember you do not need to wait for a parent-teacher conference to talk to us.

Please note the school calendar on this blog and contact the Education Department with any questions you may have. 🙂

Jolyn Mitchell, Academic Program Manager

jolyn@maplelakeacademy.com

Boys Rocket Project

We just wanted to give you a little more background on our rocket project. We decided from the beginning that we would build our rockets completely from scratch, meaning we would not purchase anything in kit form or any components that were designed for model rockets.  The only purchased components were the motors. We would have made our own motors, but Homeland Security frown on that sort of activity! We made our own air frame tubes using regular printer paper saturated with a mixture of wood glue and water, and rolled around a dowel of the correct diameter and let them dry over night.  We next created engine mount blocks to hold the motor in the air frame tube with a similar procedure and glued them into the air frame.  Next, we made fins from very light thin wood and glued them onto the air frame.  Students used geometry principles along with their knowledge of circles to attach the fins perpendicular to the circumference of the tube while also being parallel with the axis of the tube.  Next we built recovery systems from elastics, dental floss, and trash bags.  Students made either parachutes or streamers to control rocket decent.  We then made our own flame retardant recovery wadding from baking soda, water, and paper towels.  We then attached launch lugs made from soda straws and nose cones made from light weight wood.  The rockets were then painted and made flight ready.

Lauch setup.

On the designated launch day, we gathered at the launch site (sports court) and prepped the rockets with “B” powered motors for the first flights.  All the rockets were launched and all but 1 was recovered, it having landed on the roof of the house.  Altitude estimates were in excess of 1500 feet. The rockets were examined and all were in good condition for a second flight.  Again, we prepped the rockets for flight, this time with “C” motors (twice as powerful as “B” motors), and launched them for a second flight.  Unfortunately, several were not recovered, coming down in the wheat field next door and one probably landed in Tooele.  The height estimates at this time were in excess of 2500 feet.  

Much was learned and the students did a remarkable job learning about the math, physics, and chemistry involved in rocketry.  The construction was really well done and top quality.  Perhaps most importantly, they were really good citizens and helped each other out building, flying, and recovering the rockets. A great time was had by all.

Parent Teacher Conferences

It is that time again! We will be holding Parent Teacher Conferences From 9 AM to 5 PM on Friday, July 31st. Our teachers have been preparing for this day, and are ready to meet with you! We know that many of you will have your student with you on this day. We feel this will be the perfect time for us to all meet together. Please come with questions for your 20 minute meeting with the teachers. The sign up links for each school are below. They have also been emailed to you. If you have any questions, email Regan at regan.whimpey@gmail.com.

For the Girls Signup, Click Here

For the Boys Signup, Click Here

We are excited to see you all!!

Summer Education Can Be Fun

It is a sunny day in June. The horses are basking in the sun. The cats are lounging in the shade. It is enough to make you want to get out there and enjoy the weather. Here at Maple Lake, the students are working hard in their classrooms. The teacher is busy explaining the next assignment, while the students listen intently in excitement for their next project. However, this is no ordinary type of lesson plan. The students aren’t just learning math or english, this time they are learning about something of great interest to each one of them.

So what is this project we are talking about? We’ll let one of the teachers explain it in his own words:

“This term we thought we would allow each student to complete a research project on any subject they are interested in. Each student was given the opportunity to choose 3 topics. Jeff and I then discussed those topics with each student and helped each of them whittle their choices down to one topic. The goal here is to give the students ownership and control over what they are learning.”

– Seth Campbell

In addition to doing this research project, the students are also attending a Scholar’s Camp where they will be learning different types of study skills and executive functioning.

Good-byes Are Hard :(

After two years of service, we say good-bye to Byron, our science teacher. He leaves to pursue his teaching career in other areas and will be missed by all of us. Byron leaves an imprint of passion and enthusiasm for science and states his favorite part of MLA is “working with the students.” If we were all paying attention we would have noted that Byron’s favorite science is geology. He enjoys teaching about Earth’s physical structures and processes and was able to bring that to life for our students. Byron’s wish for our students is that, “they all fulfill their hopes and dreams (especially if it includes science).” Wink. Farewell Bryon. We wish the best for you and will miss you!

Look for an upcoming post about our new science teacher very soon!

Humanitarian Update

This has been quite an unusual period of time.  I extend a very grateful, and heartfelt, thank you to all who participated and shared supplies for the humanitarian project we had in February. The students were so very excited to work on it.  It was, I think, a profound experience for them to work together toward helping others. 

We ended up with 75+ hygiene kits
We were able to make 25+ blankets and had many other high priority necessities contributed

Just as we had scheduled and were planning our visit to the Lifting Hands International warehouse, it was canceled due to the quarantine.  We are looking forward to having a field trip is the near future when we are cleared to go.  We will share more photos at that time. Thank you for all you have done to help.

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Understanding High School Math from Jeff Owens

Happy New year!  I would like to post about our approach to mathematics education at MLA.  My hope is that this information will help you understand how we are helping your student on their pathway through mathematics in high school.  MLA adopted the Integrated Mathematics approach over the more traditional approach of the past. What […]

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Strawberry DNA

We have been doing great things in science! The lab we most recently did in Biology is checking out Strawberry DNA! Here are some pictures of the students obtaining the strawberry DNA.

First the students had to make a solution with the following materials.

We started with mashing up the strawberry in a bag and then dumping the contents into the coffee filter to strain out all the chunks.

Once that material had been separated, we added the rubbing alcohol and the Strawberry DNA Appeared! The white stuff hanging from the craft stick.

The students had a great time extracting the DNA from the strawberries.

Parent-Teacher Conferences April 24, 2020

Dear Parents, emails were sent out on April 15th to sign up for a time to attend our online parent conference. We appreciate your attendance and flexibility as we continue to work together. If you did not receive an email, please contact our Education Department.

We love these times when our teachers can visit one-on-one with you as we work and serve your children. School rocks!

Thumbs Up and All Smiles

Flexibility is defined as the quality of being able to bend without breaking and that is exactly the feel on campus here at Maple Lake. You cannot see it, but these two faces are actually smiling. As weeks progress and we continue to apply safety as our top priority, those of us on campus have geared up to meet the challenge. Although some of us may look different, the work we do has not changed.

This is also true for the Education Department as students and faculty adjust to the altered format of teaching. We are making it work! For example, our math teacher has implemented a “help chair” for his post lecture. Students are able to use the chair to indicate they need help from the teacher and get a one-on-one guide to completing the math problem while still in class. Our English teacher is effectively using Edmodo, our online resource for uploading assignments and homework, by giving students “real time” feedback on their current projects.

I have to say that we love our supportive staff and how they are an important part of pulling it all together. We could not do this without them. THANK YOU STAFF!