AVID® 9th Grade
Class Core Values and Behaviors
Our mission in 9th grade is to familiarize students with the college admissions process, begin taking the steps necessary for them to earn financial aid that will pay for some or all of their college education, and build their confidence and knowledge so they can navigate the financial aid system when they reach college.
Our core values are Grit/Resiliency, Self-Advocacy, and Collaboration. We know these things will help students in their lives, every day. We are going to teach students behaviors to help them put these values into practice.
- What do we mean by Grit/Resilience?
We see Grit as following through on the tasks worth your time and effort.
Behavior 1: We build our skill at Resilience and Grit when we focus on obstacles, behaviors, and solutions.
- What do we mean by Self-Advocacy?
We see Self-Advocacy as building the confidence to ask for help, learning about others, and being an active participant in the events that affect you.
Behavior 2: We build our skill at Self-Advocacy when we ask questions to understand and learn rather than place blame and judge.
- What do we mean by Collaboration?
We see Collaborations as acknowledging that you affect others through your behaviors, making an effort to get to know the people around you, and putting their needs first.
Behavior 3: We build our skill at Collaboration when we ask what we can do to help rather than assume we know the solution.
AVID® Yearly Requirements
- Weekly Relational Capacity Building
- Weekly Tutorial
- Note-taking and studying process
- Weekly Binder Check (One set of focused notes per core class/per day)
- Quarterly Socratic Seminars
- Grade reflections middle of each quarter
- Community service (50 hours or Join a Club)
- College Field Trip
- Letter to Self
- Time Capsule Additions
9th Grade AVID® Requirements
- Letter of introduction to teachers
- Learning styles
- Teacher interview/poster
- College research presentation: Out of state/ Private & Public
- Begin Time Capsule
About Brian Higgins - Joined AVID® in 2013
- AVID (9th)
- Advanced Placement Language and Composition (11th and 12th)
One of my strengths is being motivated and motivating others. When I have a task set in front of me, I focus on the task and create a passion for the task, even when it is a task I do not like. I always look for ways to be excited about tasks and what I can get out of them rather than focusing on how those tasks have interrupted my plan for the day or week. I get excited about other peoples’ success. That excitement and passion help to revitalize my attitude and strengthen my motivation when I am confronted with obstacles.
- Challenge – I am dedicated to challenging myself and others and supporting people as they work to overcome obstacles. Being focused on challenges and how to overcome them shows through in my practice of always seeking solutions for issues or obstacles, rather than waiting for someone else to come remove the obstacle from my path.
- Grace - I believe that it is completely natural for people to change their mind about things as they learn more about them. I also believe that making mistakes and learning from them is necessary for growth. I think it is wrong to hold either action against people just because you might disagree with them. If people are afraid they’ll be punished for changing their mind or making mistakes, then I believe people will be less likely to learn and adapt and find new ways to interact with their community and the world at large. This value shines through in my actions when I focus a person’s behaviors instead of the mindset behind the behavior. I try to keep my criticisms and judgments to the point, objective, and then I move on. I believe everyone deserves a second chance, and I believe that everyone is doing what they think is right for them, and it is important to approach each new situation with the grace to listen to someone else’s perspective and try to find some common ground to build a conversation or relationship on.
- Self-Reflection - I believe that I can only really grow once I’ve taken an honest look myself, can identify my weaknesses and strengths, acknowledge who I used to be and who I am now, and create a picture of who I want to be in the future. Doing these things helps me to accept myself as I am, even as I work to become the person I would like to be. One of the ways this manifests in my life is in the practice of taking time every day to review actions I’ve taken in the day and what I can do to make the most of those actions or take more productive action in similar situations in the future.
I choose to stay in AVID for many reasons. I believe my students deserve an adult within the education system who will prioritize them and push them to achieve. I believe that the students we often see in AVID are students who can be overlooked, and I want to support them in becoming students who do not allow themselves to be overlooked. I stay in AVID because I want my students to receive second chances and be able to make mistakes in an environment that is kind, growth-oriented, and accepting, and I know that as a teacher I can help create that environment. I stay in AVID because I feel like I am teaching students who care about more than getting good grades. Lastly, I choose to stay in AVID because I believe everyone should have access to a future where they can be comfortable and content, and I believe AVID can help students create that future for themselves.
20 Square Feet - Priorities
- AP Language and Composition
- Mock Trial
- Create/support a positive AVID culture
- Support other AVID teachers
- Challenge students
- Tutorials, binder checks, Socratic seminars
- Help students earn college credit
- College application and scholarship process
- Arrange field trips and cultural experiences
- Guest speakers
- Celebrate others’ successes
- Make consistent contact with family
- Say yes to invites
- Learn about others’ interests
- Ask for help
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