Empathy in Action...Soccer Unites Ybarra and Villacorta Community
Ybarra and Villacorta soccer teams unite -- Pictured together after Ybarra surprised Villacorta with purchasing new school soccer uniforms, balls and equipment for their school.
Ybarra Teacher and Soccer Coach Gilbert Luna had an idea when he visited his former school Villacorta, steps from his family home where his parents still live. The spark ignited the Ybarra community into action. "I noticed their uniforms were not in the best shape and they were missing soccer balls. It broke my heart to see my former school struggling," said Luna. "Before you know it, our whole team got involved to raise money to purchase the Villacorta team 22 shirts, shorts, eight soccer balls and a net. I want to thank all the players and parents involved, including Ybarra Teacher and Parent Mrs. K. Davis and Lupe Godinez, Ybarra Noon Supervisor and parent. This is what happens when you work at a school like Ybarra -- everything is about family!"

Ybarra students got together after school and parents drove them over to Villacorta where the Villacorta Soccer Team was having an end of year pizza party.

"I didn't know they were going to come and when they walked in we were all in shock -- the Mom in me thought 'we're not going to have enough food!' Then we noticed the kids in uniforms that looked very different from what they wore when we competed against them, and we began to realize what was happening."
"The Ybarra team surprised our students and were wearing the uniforms that they were going to give to us -- literally embracing the theme 'Take the Shirt Off My Back'. We are so humbled by this experience and it demonstrates what we are in this District -- a community," said Villacorta Teacher and Soccer Coach Prabhati Crosniel, describing Ybarra's gift of new soccer uniforms and equipment.

"We wanted to win off the field -- how better to win than by giving back? The most important thing is when we come together next year to play, it will be like playing against family," said Gilbert Luna, Ybarra Soccer Coach and Nogales High School Girls' Soccer Coach.

The elementary after-school program is 100% voluntary and both Luna and Crosniel shared the huge benefits it provides to not only students, but teachers. "Through sports, it is an informal way to get to know our kids and really connect with them. When they are in the classroom and struggling or trying to problem-solve, it makes it so much easier to push them and for them to understand that I am for them and want them to get better at school." Luna is also thrilled to be the Girl's Soccer Coach at his alma mater, Nogales High School. This year they won the first championship in the history of the school.

"This was my first year coaching and I have never played soccer in my whole life," said Crosniel. "I really wanted our kids to play soccer and give them this opportunity. Sometimes when we have them showcase their talents athletically, it changes their whole mindset when they get back in the classroom." Crosniel is also an RUSD alumni, starting her journey as a student at Jellick, Rincon and Rowland High School. She was hired by her elementary principal Dr. Carter for her first teaching position at Hollingworth. "It's so beautiful to see perspective as a student then as an educator. I've been in Rowland for 20 years. The pendalum can change in education, but the needs of our students will not."
"You didn't have to do this for us, you took the time and that's what matters because where your time is, your heart is."
Villacorta Student and Soccer Captain Neri Soto
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Rowland Unified Named as One of 10 Visionary School Districts in the Nation For Future-Focused Teaching and Learning
Rowland Unified is being recognized for scaling innovation and its future-focused approach and the implementation of a rigorous and relevant curriculum that challenges students to think beyond the classroom to solve real-world problems. The International Center for Leadership in Education (ICLE) named Rowland Unified as a visionary District for 2018 and invited Superintendent
Dr. Julie Mitchell to share best practices at the ICLE's 26th Annual Model Schools Conference this week in Orlando, Florida.

The Model Schools Conference is the nation's largest event for rapidly improving K-12 schools and Districts. “I am immensely proud to represent the Rowland Unified School District at the Model Schools Conference and share our work that is engaging our students and providing them with the knowledge and skills to succeed in the globally connected world,” said Dr. Mitchell. “As a District we are working collectively to scale innovation for the benefit of student learning and achievement.” 


羅蘭學區創新學習 獲頒「遠見學區」

Excited to represent RUSD and share about the collective hard work and dedication throughout the District to best serve our Ss through scaling innovation! #WeAreRUSD #MSC2018 @RowlandSchools @RigorRelevance
Summer Learning in Action!
Summer learning is taking place with a variety of school programs for at-risk, English Language Learners, Newcomers and GATE (Gifted and Talented Education) elementary and secondary students.
At Rowland Elementary, students from across the District are engaged in programming robots to "dance" and navigate maze formations, while others are learning the art of debate skills. Last week parents were invited to see their child's summer learning in action.

ROBOTICS: Students showed off their Rasberry Pi Self Driving Robot cars that they built and programmed using the Python Language. Team-based competitions took place as the robots tackled course mazes and students demonstrated their programming skills to music with a special “dance” off competition!

DEBATE: Students learned communication and critical thinking skills at a high level as they learned the parliamentary debate process. This involves two teams of three people discussing a topic in front of a judge and audience. Debate topics were: should people not eat meat and should full-contact football be banned.
At Jellick Elementary, 5th grade summer school students from across the District have been focused on challenge solving projects in a special "Innovation Classroom."
Students read the book "One Hen" and then discussed the global challenge for the need of more drinkable water.

"Students had to find a solution to build a product that was a low cost, effective way to filter dirty water," said Ms. Crosniel, the summer school Innovation Teacher. "They were given a budget of $4 and supplies such as a cup, filter and cotton." Student teams had to start with a blue print to design their product, calculate the cost using math, then use engineering concepts to build.

Students then created public service announcement videos about what they learned about the water crisis in other countries. They responded to each other's videos using the app tool "Flip Grid." Pictured Above: Summer School Principal Maria Jimenez watches as Innovation Teacher Ms. Crosniel assists students with their videos.

"The water filtration project was so rewarding. We want our students to take risks and be brave. This project was global in perspective and it also created empathy and understanding for others, while also engaging students in math and engineering concepts," said Teacher Ms. Bingham.
June 27, 2018 Issue Questions? Contact RUSD News Editor gward@rowlandschools.org
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