Voices, a Podcast from the Seneca Valley School District

Episode 38 - Summer Programming Plans with Ms. Amanda Mallin

May 07, 2021 Seneca Valley School District Season 1 Episode 38
Voices, a Podcast from the Seneca Valley School District
Episode 38 - Summer Programming Plans with Ms. Amanda Mallin
Show Notes Transcript

Summer Programming Plans with Ms. Amanda Mallin

Ms. Amanda Mallin, Seneca Valley Senior High School Assistant Principal 

Amanda Mallin currently serves in the role of assistant principal in the senior high, alongside Principal, Robert Ceh. This is her third year in the district, with prior experience as Cyber Coordinator, and classroom experience as an Emotional Support Teacher and a Learning Support Teacher. She holds a degree in Psychology, a Master’s Degree in Education, and continues her journey of lifelong learning both informally and formally. Wellness and mental health are topics of high interest and passion for Mrs. Mallin.

•The why behind Summer Programming
•The intentional planning of what we will offer and who will teach it
•The benefit of attending an in-person summer workshop
•The inside scoop of how to get invited and how to register

File Name: Voices E38 Amanda Mallin.mp3

File Length: 00:12:55

FULL TRANSCRIPT (with timecode)


00:00:02:23 - 00:00:07:25

Intro: Welcome to Voices, a podcast brought to you by the Seneca Valley School District. 


00:00:10:19 - 00:00:18:01

Jeff Krakoff: This is Jeff Krakoff, I'm talking with Amanda Mallin, who's the assistant principal at Seneca Valley Senior High School. Thanks for joining us. 


00:00:18:18 - 00:00:20:15

Amanda Mallin: Thanks for having me, Mr. Krakoff. 


00:00:20:21 - 00:00:40:22

Jeff Krakoff: So let's talk about something new that's coming up. Is summer programming I know for the first time at all levels, secondary, elementary. But as far as the secondary level is concerned, I guess it's been popular with the book, talking about the why of everything, what is the why behind summer programming for high school? 


00:00:41:12 - 00:01:25:27

Amanda Mallin: And you know what? I'm so glad we're starting with the why, because I think that's just so important in how we frame this and just where it came about and kind of what our intentionality was behind it. So, you know, really, we had an opportunity come to us of, you know, we we might have some grant money here and, you know, how can we use some some of this money to really benefit our students? And and this was a tough year. And how can we use some how can we create these opportunities for students that they didn't have because we were remote or because of the fact that we were maybe cohort, only part time students in the building two days at a time as opposed to five days a week for so much of the time of this year. 


00:01:26:09 - 00:02:21:27

Amanda Mallin: We were. And that's that's the bell right now. So much of the year we were we were home through all the holidays. So we really talked about reconnecting students and we really talked about creating some live in-person experiences really to make up for for the time that we were away, an extra opportunity to come in and no grades, you know, no attachment to the worry of a of a transcript or anything like that. But instead, it's just an opportunity to learn and it's an opportunity to come in and do some hands-on really cool things with the content that you were learning all year or content that you want to just learn more about, that you're going to take a class next year in that area and really just just an opportunity to re-engage and reconnect with your teachers in person and and be with your peers. 


00:02:21:29 - 00:02:45:19

Amanda Mallin: So for some of the summer programming or talking about science labs and getting to be hands-on with that material and hands-on with your teacher and just having these these experiences that we could not have this year because of the pandemic, or maybe we had them, but they were limited offerings because we were remote for so long or because students had to stay home for certain periods of time. 


00:02:45:27 - 00:03:00:08

Jeff Krakoff: All right. Well, that makes sense for the why, why don't we move on to the how? So you mentioned being intentional. Who was involved in what planning was involved to make decisions on what you're going to be offering? Who's going to be teaching? 


00:03:01:08 - 00:03:47:12

Amanda Mallin: Yeah, and you know what, I really do think a lot of a lot of heads were put together for this and we had multiple conversations to really develop something for students that students would want to take. We went I went to teachers and just said, what do you notice? What are you noticing that students just aren't having the opportunity to do? And what are you noticing? Maybe the skills that students need more practice in because of this type of year? And I got such fabulous feedback and so many great ideas that that because of these teachers and their ideas, I was able to really run with them and create these customized programs just based on teacher feedback, all from what they were experiencing firsthand with their students. 


00:03:47:14 - 00:04:10:10

Amanda Mallin: And in talking with their students. I mean, some teachers were even asking students if we would offer something this summer, what would you like it to be and would you want to come to something like that? And so we really took a lot of time to develop what we were going to offer and then, of course, wanted to put that out there to families. Once we said, you know, this is what we'll be able to offer this summer. 


00:04:10:23 - 00:04:14:13

Jeff Krakoff: All right. Can you give us some examples of what some of those offerings are going to be? 


00:04:14:22 - 00:04:54:07

Amanda Mallin: Yeah, absolutely. And so we're looking at the first there were actually there are two weeks in June, but there are June 14th through the 17th, June 21st through the 24th. And yes, those are Monday through Thursday. So we would stick to that Monday through Thursday model in the summer. And we're talking about a chemistry lab experience and a physics lab experience. So those are three-hour workshops in the morning. And we're talking about students coming in and getting to be assigned a lab group and actually getting hands-on with the chemicals and hands-on with the materials and consumables and in every day would be a different lab. 


00:04:54:09 - 00:05:28:05

Amanda Mallin: So we're really catering to the fact that students are busy and they work and they have vacations -it's summer. So if you come in for and you can't come every day, but you just come in that one day that you can come or multiple days that you can come, you are going to have a lab experience and every day is going to be a new lab experience. So we ask students to register ahead of time and let us know when they're coming so we can plan accordingly. So that's the example of some sciences. We're offering an Algebra II course refresher because it's hard to learn math online for those times that we were home. 


00:05:28:07 - 00:06:13:14

Amanda Mallin: And so we want to just offer some some in-person math fun. And he's doing puzzles and strategies and really cool like groupings and games and really trying to bring back to life and and making it so that math is fun. We're offering some some additional workshops in the other buildings. Were offering a writing workshop here at the senior high school. Students can take really they're customizing the writing workshop, whatever they want to write about it, they get to choose. So if they're coming in with like I need some help working on this application or I need this help, some help working on my resumé or I'm writing a letter of interest or I'm doing some scholarship writing, the teacher will customize the experience for the students. 


00:06:13:16 - 00:06:48:21

Amanda Mallin: So very, very personalized writing workshop here at the senior high. The other one we're trying to build some maybe this podcast will do it. Microsoft Excel. The teachers found that students really like Microsoft Excel skills excuse me, are so important in the 21st century learning. And we're finding students just don't have the the Excel experience and we really want to help prepare them for post-secondary world. And so we really want to do some cool things with bringing Excel to real world applications. 


00:06:48:23 - 00:07:20:18

Amanda Mallin: So that's another one we're offering here at the senior high school, the IHS and RGMS. They're really focusing theirs around, you know, the core the core classes in the English and the math and sciences. So they have their own workshops as well that they've developed. But, you know, I'm speaking particularly to kind of the senior high workshops because that's where I've been most intentional in my planning. But I know that they've worked at length. It is well, developing their program, summer programming options. 


00:07:20:24 - 00:07:40:24

Jeff Krakoff: OK, well, it surely sounds like there's something for everybody that's being offered. So what's the thinking behind you know, again, we've we're still in the midst, hopefully on the back end of a pandemic. But what do you see as a principal - is the benefits of in-person summer workshops versus this virtual world we've been living in for quite a while. 


00:07:41:16 - 00:08:19:11

Amanda Mallin: And I'm so glad you asked that question, because I think we've we've all had our periods of remote learning, you know, for for various reasons. And I think that the thing we miss the most was just being connected and really having that opportunity just to to be near your peers and to to work alongside somebody. And to be able to look over someone's shoulder and see, oh, this is where I made the mistake, you know, in my math equation, and oh, that's an easy fix, you know, and being able to just for a teacher, being able to walk around a space and just, you know, interact with the class and beings being in that same shared environment. 


00:08:19:13 - 00:08:51:06

Amanda Mallin: And so I think we are so excited that we can offer these summer programs in person because there is such a benefit to being in the same space with someone. And we can do small groups and, you know, get students working side by side, whether it's with a lab partner or whether it's, you know, in a I forgot to mention one of our biggest ones, which actually I don't even know if there are seats right now with the SAT/ACT prep was the hot summer program. 


00:08:51:26 - 00:09:34:13

Amanda Mallin: We might be able to squeeze you in, but that would be something. But even just to get to work alongside your peers and your reviewing and your practicing together and doing these games together and doing puzzles together in your math class, you know, there's such a benefit to to staying connected to your your teachers and your classmates. And and perhaps this might be an opportunity to reconnect if you've if you've been remote all spring and, you know, you're looking at I want to come back in the fall and this might be the perfect opportunity to kind of transition back to school because it is just in the morning, a couple of days here in the summer, four days, one week, four days, another week. 


00:09:34:15 - 00:09:43:11

Amanda Mallin: So there is such a benefit to coming in person and seeing seeing a teacher and feeling the energy in the classroom and getting to work alongside with your peers. 


00:09:43:18 - 00:09:59:01

Jeff Krakoff: OK, I want to ask you just said something about which either might not even be any spots. My understanding with the summer programming is at the elementary level, it's all full. But are you saying there are still some spots available for the high school offering? 


00:09:59:10 - 00:10:29:29

Amanda Mallin: I'm so glad you asked that. Yes. So we can we have at the secondary level we have such a variety of options through our summer programming that we have been able to really organize them and we've been able to staff them and we have been able to open it up even more. So we have sent out invitations to students personally inviting them. Teachers have sent out invitations to classes, personally inviting the students in their classes. 


00:10:30:07 - 00:11:05:18

Amanda Mallin: So, for example, if you had chemistry this year, your chemistry teacher probably sent you something about taking chemistry through this virtual or excuse me, through this in-person lab experience and something really cool that we're excited that we can offer in person is I've learned at the college level, even right now, a lot of these summer workshops that are happening at the college level or across the community, they're still virtual. So if there is a lab experience that's happening in the neighboring communities or at the college level, I learned from our one of our science teachers, they're happening virtually. 


00:11:05:20 - 00:11:46:23

Amanda Mallin: So we're thrilled that we're able to put this together to invite students into the building. And so, yes, there are still some spots available. It doesn't hurt to to ask to to apply for them to register. So I'm Amanda Mallin and you can find me you can email me at mallinal@svsd.Net. If you're listening right now and you're saying I want to hear more, I didn't personally get an invitation, but I one of the courses that you mentioned I'm interested in, I can set you up with a senior high workshop or I can send you on to the other two buildings and they can schedule you if they have spaces. 


00:11:46:25 - 00:11:53:12

Amanda Mallin: I know that RGMS and the IHS had had seats available for their summer workshops as well. 


00:11:54:02 - 00:12:01:26

Jeff Krakoff: Well, it sounds exciting. I can tell you're excited about this offering for the summer. And I'm sure a lot of parents, students and teachers are as well. 


00:12:02:10 - 00:12:28:17

Amanda Mallin: They are. And I will say to students, if any students are listening, a lot of these teachers have signs up outside their classroom doors or at the front of their at the front of their chalkboard. They're not chalkboards anymore. They're whiteboards. But on the whiteboards at the front, you can scan a QR code and you can go ahead and just register. I've left my registration open so that I can see anybody coming in after this date. 


00:12:29:01 - 00:12:44:07

Jeff Krakoff: All right. Well, thanks so much for sharing all this great info. Again, any students, parents get in touch if you're interested in this. Thanks again. That was Amanda Mallin, assistant principal at the Seneca Valley Senior High School. Thanks and have a great day. 


00:12:44:24 - 00:12:47:07

Amanda Mallin: Thank you so much for your time and thanks for listening. 


00:12:47:10 - 00:12:48:12

Jeff Krakoff: All right. Take care. 


00:12:48:20 - 00:12:49:13

Amanda Mallin: You too. Bye.