IMAGINE FIRESTONE’S CHARACTER MISSION STATEMENT
We at Imagine Charter School at Firestone seek to build a community in which trusting relationships are fostered by our teaching, modeling, and promoting of our school’s core virtues; particularly: Respect, Responsibility, Curiosity, Perseverance, and Creativity.
Six Measures of Excellence - Imagine Firestone’s decision making is guided by the following six measures of excellence. These measures of excellence define who we are and differentiate us from other charter schools. These six measures of excellence shape the culture of the school and form the framework to shape school goals and priorities.
These six measures assure the continued operation of a quality school that serves to help parents educate their children. Our six measures of excellence are:
- Shared Values of Integrity, Justice and Fun
- Parent/Guardian Choice
- Academic Growth
- Positive Character Development
- Economic Sustainability
- School Development
Content - We use the Core Knowledge curriculum in our teaching, which was developed by E.D. Hirsch. The Core Knowledge scope and sequence is founded on the belief that literacy depends on a shared knowledge and that to be literate one must be familiar with a broad range of knowledge taken for granted by speakers and writers in our culture. Core
Knowledge clearly articulates what students are to learn in each subject. Core Knowledge is based on the premise that all knowledge builds on previous knowledge and that in addition to defining what students learn, knowledge must be sequenced. Finally, Core
Knowledge is based on the understanding that some knowledge does not change despite the many advances occurring in our society.
We use a Classical approach in our teaching. The three stages of the Trivium guide our instruction.Grammar Academy students(K-4) learn the building blocks for all other learning. Rules of phonics and spelling, rules of grammar, poems, the study of Latin to expand vocabulary, the stories of history and literature, descriptions of plants and animals and the human body, and the facts of mathematics are all part of this foundational content. The culminating event of the Grammar Academy is a special recitation night in which students celebrate the depth and breadth of the knowledge learned over the years.
Logic Academy (grades 5-8) students begin to think more analytically. This is a time when students begin to pay attention to cause and effect, to the relationships between different fields of knowledge, and the way facts fit together into a logical framework. Students are ready for deeper algebraic and computational thinking, and begin to apply logic to all academic subjects.The logic of writing, for example, includes paragraph construction and learning to support a thesis; the logic of reading involves the criticism and analysis of texts; the logic of history demands that the student find out why wars were fought, rather than simply reading their story; the logic of science requires that the child learn and practice scientific inquiry.
The culminating event of the Logic Academy is the Capstone Project. This project, beginning in 5th grade under the direction of advisers, typically undergoes several iterations over the course of study. Using the Design Process, students develop a project of interest in any of the disciplines. They must persevere until the final stage in which they present their final project. The Capstone Project must be presented prior to promotion to high school.
Character - At Imagine Firestone, we are committed to guiding children towards becoming people of character. In order to be people of character, children must first know what that means and what is expected of them. This involves teaching children the building blocks of character, which we identify as the Core Virtues. The Core Virtue study occurs throughout the preschool through 4th grade years. From this foundational study, we move onto helping students build leadership capacity in 5th-8th grades. This study is built on a program called Habitudes. Along the way, we guide student character through a Love and Logic approach which is designed to guide students in responsible decision making.
Community - One of Imagine Firestone’s primary commitments is to build a strong community that will positively shape the hearts and minds of students. As we collectively pursue our mission and vision, we commit to:
- Helping our students know that they are members of a particular community in a particular place, and that they are accountable to that community;
- Involving ourselves in the local community, as well as inviting our local community members to involve themselves in our work;
- Recognizing the strengths rather than the limitations of every member of our community, and modeling relationships of mutual respect;
- Developing continuity between home and school, and respecting cultural and educational differences that may exist; and
- Treating parents as full partners and active participants in the educational process.