“It was so cool to see the inside of me!” (Year 2, Week 9)

What is the most important role of a guide?:

  • Being a growth mindset encourager
  • Offering processes and strategies
  • Providing difficult choices

The heroes discussed this question during morning launch on Wednesday this week. After some discussion, the majority of the heroes agreed that the most important thing for a guide is to give encouragement to the heroes.

At Heroes Academy we believe that the heroes thrive in an environment where the adult is seen as a mentor or guide rather than the source of knowledge or authority. To reinforce this during the launch and to model vulnerability, Kara asked the heroes for cool and warm feedback on how well she is carrying out these roles of a guide. The heroes shared that they feel she could improve providing difficult choices and not answering questions and that she was doing well at giving encouragement.

The studio maintenance system has been improved this week. Last week it became evident that the heroes were struggling to treat the studio with respect so this week each day has started with a question: Is this a world-class studio ready for focused work? As the studio maintenance leader, Betsy gives feedback as to what in the studio needs to be tidied up in order to prepare it for the day. The heroes then spend time each morning preparing the studio until it is ready to start the day.

As this routine has repeated itself throughout the week, the heroes are more eager to ensure that studio maintenance is completed to a higher standard each afternoon (to avoid having to clean it further the following morning!). It is exciting to see how new habits and holding each other accountable to treating the studio with respect are developing.

The Detective training for the heroes was completed this week! The last quest challenge gave heroes the opportunity to learn about and even extract their own DNA!

After this exciting experiment, the heroes spent time preparing for the exhibition next week and reflecting on all their work in the quest throughout the session. This quest proved to be an exciting and engaging one for the heroes, some of their reflections included:

“My greatest achievement in the quest was getting the height of the culprit right because we just had a footprint yet I got the thief’s height perfectly!”

“I rate myself a 4 out of 5 in this quest because I gave up but then I went back to work”

“It was so cool to see the inside of me!”(during the DNA extraction experiment)

As part of wrapping up the heroes work in the Detective Quest this session the studio travelled to a local police station for an excursion on Thursday this week.

The heroes first heard from a Crime Scene Investigator about how they collect evidence, specifically fingerprints, from crime scenes. Some heroes were even fingerprinted themselves using dusting powder and magnetic powder!

The highlight of the field trip for many of the heroes was getting to meet the Police Department mascot dog, Scout. The officer in charge of Scout shared his experiences of working with a police dog and Scout also showed off many of his tricks!

This week was the final opportunity for the heroes to complete their story book project. This session the heroes have been exploring story-telling by creating a fictional story that follows Freytag’s Pyramid structure. During the final storybook project time, the heroes who had completed their stories published them either using storybird.com or google docs. For the heroes that completed every writing challenge in this project for the entire session, they will have their book professionally printed and added to the studio library. Congratulations to Tyler, Caden, Betsy, Olivia and Franki who will be getting their books printed!

This week parent’s also gather to discuss their hero’s journey and how to better support their heroes. They left better equipped to see their child’s journey from a closer view, while challenging themselves to better support their hero. The final questions they were asked was:

As a parent, do you need to:

  • Watch the journey from a closer distance, looking for opportunities to praise your hero’s efforts
  • Create guardrails so your hero can stay on the road you believe they must stay on
  • Step off the road, trusting your child to take on their own challenges, knowing that if you don’t, these later become the dragons your hero will face

It’s always a wonderful experience to hear parents share experiences and support each other on the journey. No doubt the magic at Heroes Academy is not in the studio systems and process, but in how the parents and school work together to prepare these heroes for a hero’s journey.

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Heroes Academy

Elementary blog for Heroes Academy, an innovative school in Boise, Idaho. We inspire children to find a calling and change the world → http://heroesacademy.org