Monday, June 23, 2014

Wolfe Trap Teaching Artist Diane Macklin Brings the Arts to City Springs

A City Springs student sports his caterpillar headband, which
was inspired by Eric Carle's The Very Hungry Caterpillar.

This school year Wolf Trap Teaching Artist Diane Macklin brought the arts to City Springs students through a Wolf Trap Literacy Residency.

The 16-week program, made possible by the Wolf Trap Institute for Early Learning Through the Arts and Young Audiences of Maryland, engaged six City Springs teachers in a highly collaborative and creative partnership to improve student literacy. Participating teachers included Mindy Cipriano, Doe Kim Corcoran, Mallory Davis, Dottie Glewwe, Nicole LeFrancois, and Kiera Jones.

Diane Macklin is an acclaimed storyteller, actress, and educator who has delighted audiences for over 15 years, sharing tales through a dynamic style seasoned with rhythm, sounds, and movement, engaging listeners of all ages.

"We absolutely loved having Ms.Diane come to our school," said Mallory Davis.

Diane provided professional development for teachers while helping the students learn through active participation. Classroom experiences focused on performing arts-based strategies that teachers could use to foster young children’s learning and development.

During the last session of the residency students made caterpillar headbands and acted out the life cycle of a butterfly, as described in the popular children's book The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle.

"The kids looked forward to Ms. Diane coming into our class every week," said Ms. Davis.

"They still talked about her after the residency was over. I think my students will always remember Ms. Diane."

We would like to thank Ms. Maclkin, the Wolf Trap Institute for Early Learning, and Young Audiences of Maryland for providing this wonderful opportunity for our students and teachers.

About the Wolf Trap Institute for Early Learning and Young Audiences of Maryland
The Wolf Trap Institute for Early Learning Through the Arts is an internationally respected program that provides innovative arts-based teaching strategies and services to early childhood teachers, caregivers, parents, and their children from 0 to 5 through the disciplines of drama, music, and movement.

As the Maryland sponsor of the Wolf Trap Institute for Early Learning Through the Arts, Young Audiences expands access to arts experiences for Maryland’s youngest students during the critical early learning years. Each program offers professional development to build teachers’ skills and confidence in arts integration techniques so that the arts remain a strong part of their lessons after the residency ends.

For more information about the Wolf Trap Institute for Early Learning visit:

For more information about Young Audiences of Maryland visit:

Thursday, June 19, 2014

HHA Students Visit Junior Achievement's BizTown Courtesy of Legg Mason

On June 5th, fifth grade students from Hampstead Hill Academy visited Junior Achievement (JA) of Central Maryland's BizTown site in Owings Mills, courtesy of Legg Mason.

In January Legg Mason offered to send students from BCP's schools to BizTown, a 10,000 square foot "city," complete with its own micro-economy, for a day.

Students spent the day role playing what a typical day in the life of an adult may be like. Responsibilities included operating a healthcare center, conducting bank business, serving as Mayor, and more.

As business owners, students were required to use teamwork, critical thinking and decision making skills to ensure that their businesses were able to turn a profit for the day.

As citizens, students had to consider giving back to their community and learned to balance their own personal finances.

Teachers from Hampstead Hill Academy and volunteers from ADP, Business Volunteers Maryland, KatzAbosch, and One Main Financial assisted students throughout the day.

"The energy of the students at BizTown was palpable," said BCP Executive Vice President Larry Schugam.

"Students were fully engaged in running their city. I even had the honor of meeting BizTown's Mayor, who took time out of her busy schedule for a photo op."

Preparing for the Big Day

Preparations for the big day began months ago. Using the JA curriculum, teachers taught students about financial literacy, work readiness and entrepreneurship.

Students gained practical knowledge about how an economy works and their role as producers and consumers. Students also interviewed for jobs available in the "city," elected a mayor, worked in teams to create a business plan, and learned about personal financial responsibility as citizens of JA BizTown.

Thank You

We would like to thank Junior Achievement and Legg Mason for providing this wonderful opportunity for our students. Special thanks to the HHA teachers and volunteers from ADP, Business Volunteers Maryland, KatzAbosch, and One Main Financial for helping to make this day a grand success!

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

BUDL Wins National Award/City Springs Student Attends Ceremony

On May 22, 2014 the Afterschool Alliance honored the Baltimore Urban Debate League (BUDL) with the 2014 MetLife Foundation Afterschool Innovator Award.

BUDL CEO Pamela Block Brier and City Springs Elementary/Middle School seventh grade student Darren Meredith accepted the award on behalf of the program at the “Breakfast of  Champions,” a gala event in Washington, D.C. featuring Members of Congress and national Afterschool Alliance champions.

Darren has participated in BUDL for four years. Megan Miskowski and Gerald Loiacono coach the City Springs Debate Team and in May Megan was named BUDL Coach of the Year.

Only five afterschool programs in the country were recognized for using innovative approaches to help middle school students succeed in the programs, school and life. The Afterschool Innovator Award includes $10,000 for BUDL to expand its work.

Over the last 15 years the Baltimore Urban Debate League has served thousands of Baltimore City students and trained and engaged hundreds of teachers. This year alone BUDL served over 500 students across 30 elementary, middle and high schools.

The program helps students learn to present an argument using evidence, evaluate the merit and credibility of evidence, respond clearly to questions raised about that argument, and listen to and learn from others.

BUDL's newest partnership supports BCPS schools and teachers in their common core aligned "It's Debatable" program, which provides professional development to teachers in schools across the City to learn to use debate and argumentation based teaching strategies in classrooms in every discipline.

The “Breakfast of Champions” is part of the 13th annual Afterschool for All Challenge, sponsored  by the Afterschool Alliance, which brings together hundreds of educators, parents, afterschool leaders and advocates from around the country for a series of events and meetings with Members of Congress.

Following the "Breakfast", Darren and other participants from 46 states met with senators and representatives, including Senator Ben Cardin, to talk about the many ways afterschool programs support children, families, school and communities, and to urge them to support the Afterschool for America's Children Act.

We would like to thank BUDL for supporting our students and the Afterschool Alliance for recognizing BUDL's oustanding work!

For more information about the Baltimore Urban Debate League visit:

About the Afterschool Alliance
The Afterschool Alliance is a nonprofit public awareness and advocacy organization working to
ensure that all children and youth have access to quality afterschool programs. More
information is available at

Darren in Front of the U.S. Capitol

Darren and U.S. Senator Ben Cardin

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Hampstead Hill Academy Students Attend Peter and the Starcatcher

On May 11, 2014 twenty students and teachers from Hampstead Hill Academy joined thirty students and teachers from Dr. Rayner Browne Elementary/Middle School for a performance of Peter and the Starcatcher at  the Hippodrome Theater.

This opportunity was made possible by Legg Mason, which sponsors the Hippodrome Foundation's “Bringing Enchanted Tales to Life” program. "Bring Enchanted Tales to Life" introduces the arts to fourth, fifth and sixth grade students from seven Baltimore City and County Schools.

Students study the concept of fairytales, and then Hippodrome Foundation staff help the students to write and illustrate a class fairytale, which is published as a hardcover book.

We would like to thank Legg Mason and the Hippodrome Foundation for providing this wonderful opportunity for our students.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

OriolesREACH Program Hosts HHA Students

Students from Hampstead Hill Academy were recognized during a recent field trip to an Orioles baseball game sponsored by the OriolesREACH Program.

Each season, OriolesREACH hosts thousands of underprivileged youth as part of the Gameday Experience Program. Group members receive game tickets, concessions vouchers, an Orioles t-shirt, a cap and transportation to and from the game. Tickets are provided courtesy of Orioles players.

For more than 50 years, the Baltimore Orioles have worked hard to give back to the local community, becoming involved in a variety of area programs and initiatives. Through OriolesREACH, the team seeks opportunities to reach out to their neighbors and help their fans improve their daily lives. In addition to partnering with existing charities and organizations, the Orioles have also established a collection of initiatives.

We would like to thank the Baltimore Orioles for supporting our students.

Learn more about OriolesREACH at: