Silver Lining Bus Ride
Evan Simpson, Dean of Students

On December 17th the first half of our school year was winding down. Students had been working diligently all year and had their sights set on a certain prize; our first school ski trip. In a year full of canceled vacations and events, this was one promise we wanted to keep for the students. They had already faced disappointment after we had to reschedule the original trip a few weeks prior. Now we were faced with the last school day of 2020 and there were no more chances for a do-over. Loveland ski area is about 70 miles from the school, and by bus, it usually takes just shy of 90 minutes. It was about 90 minutes into this particular drive that I could see the students deflate. Construction in Idaho Springs delayed our drive by about two hours. When we finally arrived and there was only a little time left to ski the students could have just given up. It probably didn’t help morale that we then had to wait in a long lift line to get up the mountain. Now, I’ve skied in a lot of cool places, in perfect powder, and with my best friends, but I’m not sure that anything will be able to top the energy of the few runs we got to go on that day. These students have had to put their lives on hold this year and it has made the already difficult teenager years even tougher. This brief moment of release reassured me that we’ve been doing the right thing for the students this year and I’m excited for more in the next semester.
 
Accelerated Schools’ First Ski Trip of the Season to Loveland Ski Area
Kyle Pepper, Community Outreach and Enrollment Counselor
 
Accelerated Schools went on their first ski trip of the 2020-21 school year on December 17, 2020! During the winter and spring months while weather permits, Accelerated Schools offers students the opportunity to participate in our Ski Program. Ski trips are planned every other week on Thursdays at Loveland Ski Area, located in stunning Summit County just 53 miles west of Denver off I-70. Students leave on the Accelerated buses right after homeroom at 9:45 AM and return to school anytime between 4-5 PM for pickup.

Students who choose to participate in the Ski Program are given the chance to get outside and experience all that our beautiful Colorado mountains have to offer, while at the same time earning elective Physical Education credit. We believe rewarding experiences like these ski trips and other off-campus activities are necessary and essential for motivating student success in school. Not only are these trips something for the student to look forward to, but these unique trips also allow students to bond and socialize with one another while rewarding their hard work and effort in school. 

I am very excited to continue these ski trips every other week on Thursdays during the winter months while weather permits in the new calendar year! If you have any specific questions or concerns regarding our Ski or Activities Programs, please contact me directly at kpepper@acceleratedschools.org.
Who's Who in Music Class?
Valerie Montaño, Middle and High School Music Instructor

Can you guess who your student is?  
 
  1. He has a great memory for piano pieces he played long ago.
  2. He has excellent focus in his guitar practice.
  3. She maneuvers easily between movie music and the music of Beethoven.
  4. She sings easily while playing the guitar.
  5. She has an exquisite singing voice and plays melodies by ear.
  6. His brass-playing experience has helped him greatly in learning to play the piano.
  7. He's a champ at playing pentatonic compositions on the piano.
  8. She surprises us with new piano melodies every single day.
  9. He practices his guitar diligently in China.
  10. She has researched and written commentary on musical pieces from the Baroque and Classical Periods.
  11. He seeks out classic melodies to play, while also polishing his chord playing on the piano.
 
To the students I haven’t met yet as I write this, I look forward to seeing your strengths.

Keep up the good work, everyone!

Answer Key: 1. Christian, 2. Eli, 3. Jesse, 4. Eva, 5. Sofia, 6. Auggie, 7. Johnny, 8. Kayley, 9. Kevin, 10. Mae, 11. Nikolai
"Ice" Skating in Olde Town Arvada
Debby Sharp, Middle School Instructor
 
We went on a fun but different activity to Olde Town Arvada for an ice skating adventure. I say different because there was no ice in the ice skating. We skated on synthetic tiles that appeared to look like a type of plastic. It was hard at first, but some of us like Jesse and Bella became quite the experts by the end of our skate time. 
 
It was a fun time for all! We got to Olde Town Arvada with about 45 minutes to kill so we walked around the town and checked out the quaint little shops. Of course, we had to go into the candy store. Nikolai had some yummy hot chocolate and everyone else got candy which was quickly consumed. We finally made it back and got right on the rink. The rink is outside and Olde Town Arvada is a beautiful little town so if you ever get the chance, take a stroll through this little Colorado town. It’s worth it!
Fine Arts Made a Book!
Evyn Marsh, High School Instructor

During our last few weeks in December, Fine Arts was busy crafting away on their very own book! By partnering up with Studentreasures, we were able to hand-make every page of "The Ungrateful Turkey" and "Our Favorite Memes and Memories." Students were allowed to pick their own topic, draw their own illustrations, and write their own stories. I'm so proud of the hard work each student put in, and I'm blown away by the creativity! Being able to help the students narrow down their topics, plan their pages, and create fun drawings was a great learning experience. Students can utilize these skills in the future if they ever want to be an author or illustrator! When the books arrive we will be celebrating our hard work with a dramatic class reading. If your student chose to be a part of this bookmaking experience, you are welcome to purchase a copy of the book from Studentreasures. For more information, please contact me at emarsh@acceleratedschools.org
Accelerated Schools' Library Wish List
We are proud that the Accelerated Schools' library has over 4,500 books! While doing our inventory, we noticed we have quite a few incomplete book series, so we have started composing a Book Series Wish List. We would be ecstatic if you would like to help us fill any gaps that we have in our collection. The wonderful people at Book Bar Denver have been kind enough to put together a virtual wish list / registry for the school.
Please visit www.bookbardenver.com/wishlist/288 and type in ACCELERATEDFUNDRAISER at checkout to help fill our library!
Holiday Festivities
For more than 40 years, concerned parents have turned to Accelerated Schools for individualized learning programs helping students overcome challenges, and excel academically. The fact is, a traditional school system is not designed to meet the needs of every child. When a student is not being successful, or is not thriving in a traditional environment, parents must often look elsewhere for a solution. This is were Accelerated Schools comes in.

Accelerated Schools begins by creating a learning program designed specifically for a student. Our work points are toward changing the ratio of failure to success and by cultivating an environment of accountability. Our students are given attainable goals and are rewarded by celebrating their accomplishments. Once a student starts experiencing success, their attitude, motivation and effort improve dramatically. This ends the negative cycle and leads to positive academic progress and positive self-esteem. 
If you have comments and/or suggestions about our newsletter, email Adam Burnett.