Preston Middle School is part of the Poudre School District and is located to Fort Collins, Colorado. At Preston they believe that in order to create an effective learning environment students, teachers and parents need to act as partners and maintain strong and supportive relationships. Preston is a S.T.E.M. school with high academic standards and stresses order and excellence. All classes, core and electives are considered an important to the learning environment.
Preston offers opportunities for student initiated clubs along with 18 other school sponsored clubs that include anything from hiking, sports and S.T.E.M related activities such as engineering clubs. The after school clubs and activities create an enriching environment for all skill levels and offer a variety of options for students to continue learning and growing outside of the classroom.
Preston is not a particularly diverse school, based on statistics the student population consists of 83% are Caucasian, 8% are Hispanic and 3% are two or more races. The student to teacher ratio is about 20 to 1 which has stayed consistent since 2010. The female to male population is as follows, female 49% and male 51%. Only 13% of the population participate in free or reduced lunch.
The room is set up with 6 tables that can seat at least five students creating an environment for collaborative learning. On the east side of the classroom presentations are given on the smart board and the way the seats are set none of the students have their back to the teacher when they are presenting. on the right side of the south wall are all of the material cabinets that contains bins labelled with materials that can be removed and used at tables. On the other side of that wall the students have totes where they store their projects, sketchbooks and materials for the class. On the North side of the class room their are two computers and a printer. The North wall is made up of windows so students and teachers can see outside and get natural light. The west wall contains a chalk board and a white board and underneath a shelf for storing materials and projects. The kiln room is located behind the teachers desk in the east corner of the classroom.
SCHOOL WIDE POLICIES FOR MANAGEMENT, SAFE SCHOOLS, AND STUDENTS WITH SPECIAL NEEDS
In order to create a safe and positive learning environment Preston has implemented many strategies and resources for students. P.A.W.S. is an acronym that stands for Positive choices, Attitude, Work ethic and Sense of community implemented in the classrooms as a behavior strategy for a safe and positive work environment. There is also a SRO (School Resource Officer) at the school from 7:00 am to 4:00 pm everyday of the week and for special events.
At Preston they have a para and dedicated teachers for students with special needs. They hold events and have students participate in team building exercises during and after school.
Clay Slab Gnomes- 7th and 8th Grade Students learned the basics of how to build using clay slabs by creating their own gnome. We began the lesson by creating a gnome character and then writing a short story about this character. Students used their stories as inspiration and reference to help them bring their character to life using clay and watercolor glazes. Students not only learned how to build using slab but were able to experiment with different textures and adding and subtracting clay.
Gelli Prints- 7th and 8th Grade Students learn the basics of monoprinting by using plexi glass and gelli plates. They become familiar of how to make marks and create compositions using different processes and materials. Students then learn about collages and further explore by using their prints and other media to create a mixed media collage of their favorite landscape.