By Will McClure
Everything you always wanted to know about AVID, but were afraid to ask. This was the tagline for the AVID Parent Meeting held by Stamford High School in the Stamford ISD Media Center on Monday, November 29. Organized and presented by AVID teacher Theasa Lefevre and her AVID students from all four high school classes, the meeting was designed to give parents an idea of what their child does in the AVID classroom and how it will help prepare them to become better students in both high school and at the college level.
AVID is described as a "college and career readiness class that prepares students for their college experiences," with the students using different tools and skills learned within the class to help them throughout their high school classes and better prepare them for the college experience. Students keep binders in all of their classes at Stamford to help them stay organized for their classes, separated by class, as well as keep a pencil pouch to keep all of their writing materials handy for note-taking using the Cornell Notes system as well as maintain a "learning log" and calendars for upcoming assignments. When taking notes for their different classes, the AVID students use the Cornell Notes system to help them organize their ideas and learn how to take notes quickly, but efficiently, to take notes during class, point out key points about the notes after class, and summarize the main idea of the lesson in order to make review much easier. The students are also required to keep a learning log throughout the week where they document what was learned in each of their classes each day of the school week, ending with a summary of the week as a whole on Friday to be turned in. Students also keep weekly and monthly calendars to keep up on homework assignments and upcoming tests to help them study and prepare for major assignments.
After giving the brief overview of the class, the AVID students discussed their different experiences of the class and how it will help them in their future. Along with the different tools learned in the classroom, the students are able to visit college campuses to see the college experience first-hand as well as be visited by guest speakers who bring different life experiences to teach to the students. Students are able to build their confidence and set goals for themselves, putting forth hard work and dedication to help them achieve their goals. As far as AVID's impact, students are able to learn skills that will help them in the college application process, making the process much easier, as well as organize items for financial aid and letters of recommendation to help potentially boost acceptance.
Throughout the evening, parents were able to ask questions about the program to gain a better understanding of the concepts learned by the students. While the students show that they have to complete a lot of work to achieve their goals, the results are more than worth it as the students move through high school and into the next chapter of their academic career. Lefevre thanked the parents for coming to the meeting to learn more about the program and stated that there will be another meeting in the spring where parents can learn more about AVID tutorials, but for now, parents were able to see the benefits that the AVID program can bring to their children.