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October 2010

P i n n a c l e E d u c a t i o n ’s M a g a z i n e f o r S t u d e n t s a n d P a r e n t s

Volume 2, Issue 4

In this Issue: Links Library

Important links with tips and resources for students. pg. 5

Important Dates Mark your calendars with these important Pinnacle events. pg. 4

Tips of the Month Helpful student and parent tips. pg. 6

Pinnacle Scholarships are Now Available Learn more about this opportunity. pg. 7

Fall AIMS Testing is Almost Here! Find out what you need to do to be ready for the exam. pg. 7

Tempe West Campus Learn about one of Pinnacle’s unique campus locations. pg. 6

Let World of Work…WORK for you! New Support Site

Read about the benefits of this great site program. Our new Student Support Desk has become a great student resource. pg. 2 pg. 3

words of wisdom from ur teacher on how 2 do gr8t in ur online classes this year Some tips and strategies to help you be successful in your online class. pg. 5


PinnaclePost Contents October 2010 - Volume 2, Issue 4

Learn More About Our New Student Support Desk The Student Support Desk was created to assist all Pinnacle Education students with their day-to-day technical issues. The mission of the Student Support Desk is to help remove any barriers that might get in the way of the student succeeding in their classes. Since our classes are all done online, there are bound to be technical issues that arise. The Pinnacle Student Support Desk is here to make those technical issues a barrier no more! Over the summer it was decided that we would create a designated Student Support Desk to assist Pinnacle students with any technical issue they might encounter while taking classes with us. The Student Support Desk is twofold: 1. It is an active and constantly updating website that houses tons of “posts” that helps solve common technical issues that students have while taking classes with Pinnacle. When you go to the Student Support Website you are able to search for your question or look at the “tag cloud” for

a tag that relates to your issue. As of the end of September, the Student Support Website has been viewed over 3,000 times, showing that hundreds of students visit this site each week for technical support. 2. It is a live Pinnacle Education representative that takes your calls and emails and Elluminate’s with you Monday-Friday 8am to 8pm. Can’t find your answer on the Student Support Website, or maybe you just need additional clarification? You can “chat” live with our representative through the Elluminate link on the website, email your question to supportdesk@innovat-ed.com or you can pick up the phone and speak with one of us by dialing 480-755-8222 x1720. Many students need help understanding the “Enter Course Time” chart that pops up to record offline time. Especially if you are a new student, this chart and the idea of entering “offline” time can be confusing. To date, one our most popular posts on the Student Support Website is our “Recording Offline

Visit the Counselor’s Corner Website!

Time” post and video tutorial. Another common technical question we get is, “How do I submit my assignment to my teacher?” Another popular post, “Submitting An Assignment Through The Dropbox,” explains this in great detail and shows you what you need to do, as well as clarifies the importance and reasoning behind it.

ACT Question of the day: http://www.actstudent.org/qotd/

SAT Question of the day: http://sat.collegeboard.com/ practice/sat-question-of-the-day

Make sure you check out Pinnacle Online High School Counselor’s Corner website at www.pinnacleeducation.com! Parents and students can find resources and a variety of relevant information on Counselor’s Corner. Visit the site today! Check back often for updates.

Pinnacle Education- www.pinnacleeducation.com

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Let World of Work... WORK for You!

By: Vince Mosca and Kristen Boomer

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id you know that over two-thirds of American high school students are employed? That’s 5.5 million youth between the ages of 12 and 17 (Child Labor Coalition)! World of Work is an amazing Pinnacle program that allows students to earn elective credit while they work at a jobsite. Many of our students are balancing work and school, amongst other responsibilities. At Pinnacle, we want to reward those students who are able to maintain multiple responsibilities, including real-world job experience. To be eligible for the program, a student must meet the following requirements: 1. A student must be within 1.5 core credits of graduating (3 classes or less) 2. A student must need elective credits to meet graduation requirements (9 elective credits are required for graduation) 3. A student must have a job where he/ she works a minimum of 20 hours/week 3

4. A student must be enrolled at one of Pinnacle Education’s campuses (Tempe East, Tempe West, Mesa, Casa Grande, or Nogales site). Students are required to work 20 hours a week, but many will work more. Students will turn in pay stubs as proof of employment and hours worked. Also, students will supplement this quantitative data (data that is numerical in nature, and can be measured) with journal entries and essays regarding their work experiences for qualitative data (data that looks at the quality of something that cannot necessarily be measured purely by numbers). Although students have to complete supplemental information regarding their work experience, this process is definitely less time-consuming than taking additional elective courses, and rewards students for their accountability and additional real-world responsibilities! If a student decides to participate in World of Work (WOW), their employment, combined with the required quantitative and qualitative data described above

will satisfy an elective credit. A student that satisfies all criteria will earn half an elective credit every three weeks. That means that if a student participates in WOW for an entire semester, he/she will earn three elective credits! Sometimes our students feel overwhelmed towards the end of high school with deadlines, requirements, and impending adulthood. Often, high school graduation feels a million miles away, and other responsibilities in life take priority over education. World of Work is a great way to earn elective credits as well as learn realworld experience in the workforce. If you are a student who meets the requirements above, and you’re interested in World of Work, speak to your Personal and Career Explorations teacher or your online counselor as soon as possible. -------------------------------------------------Cited Information: “Youth Employment Statistics”. StopChildLabor.org. 29 Sep 2010. Online. 2000. www.stopchildlabor. org/uschildlabor/statistics.htm

Pinnacle Education - www.pinnacleeducation.com


Elluminating the Student Experience: By: Kristen Boomer

W h at is Elluminate? The Future of Elluminate As part of Pinnacle’s fall engagement project, staff was assigned the task of developing and educating all of our instructors and counselors about the value and function of Elluminate Live! virtual classrooms. Some teachers used Elluminate in the spring semester last year, but in the fall semester, every instructor will be available for at least one hour a day in their virtual classrooms. Counselors are also available for our VHS students, which is an exciting change! Using Elluminate in our courses will help to improve engagement, retention, and overall achievement. It will also improve personal rapport between Pinnacle students and instructors in a digital learning environment. Best of all, through live presentations and chat, Elluminate provides synchronous learning opportunities for students that have never been available in the past!

With several resources such as desktop sharing, application sharing, interactive polling, and multimedia streaming available, instructors and counselors are finding new ways to reach their students in brand new ways to enhance the student experience. Throughout the school year, staff will continue to learn more about how to best use Elluminate for every student. To remain competitive within the growing digital learning environment, Pinnacle counselors and instructors use Elluminate daily and will continue to develop more of a community within the virtual world. “I don’t know why I didn’t figure out this online talking with you sooner! I probably would have been done [with my class] already!” – David Contreras, Pinnacle Graduate, Spring 2010

Did You Know? Did you know that at Pinnacle, we recommend that you create a folder on your desktop for each of the courses you take? That way you can save all of your work and assignments directly into that folder, and access them easily when you are ready to upload the assignment, or continue working on it. It is very important to save all of your work so that you have a backup copy if necessary. This is a small step you can take in order to become more organized in your courses!

Important Dates October 23: ACT Test October 26: AIMS Writing October 27: AIMS Reading October 28: AIMS Math October 31: Halloween November 5: Registration deadline for December 11 ACT test November 6: SAT Test

November 17: All Fall 2010 Graduates must have all coursework complete and Graduation application and fees paid. Pinnacle Scholarship applications are due. November 25: Thanksgiving December 11: ACT Test December 15: Fall 2010 Graduation Ceremony, 7pm, Mesa Convention Center

Pinnacle Education - www.pinnacleeducation.com

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words of wisdom from ur teacher on how 2 do gr8t in ur online classes this year By: Kristen Boomer

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f you can believe it, there was a time b4 cell phones when people had to talk to each other in person, call from home, or even ,*gasp*, write a letter. now, though, cuz we have so many ways in american society to take shortcuts, it becomes a bad habit for you to transfer those shortcuts to your schoolwork. in an online class where everything is typed the same way u would type a text msg, it becomes even easier to fall into bad habits! ENOUGH! As an iPhone junkie, I recognize the difficulty in adapting technological lingo into professional writing. However, it isn’t impossible, I promise! You can learn the shift key, and capitalize all the I’s in your writing pretty easily, without changing a single text habit. Recognizing you have a problem is the first step to recovery. Then, instead of falling into bad habits in schoolwork, you can use technology to your advantage! Using grammar and spelling check in word processing programs will actually help you fix these shortcuts in language so that instructors will not have to take off silly points for “b4” instead of “before.” To make sure you get credit for all of your great ideas and insights, check your work for the following common text messaging lingo that might creep into your formal schoolwork: 1. Capitalize Your I’s! Every time you speak in first person, no matter what the class, I is always capitalized! 2. “U” is not a word! It won’t take long

to type those two extra letters in “you”, I promise. 3. Formal language does not contain numbers and letters! If you check your work b4 your turn it in, you will do gr8t! 4. Write out the word “because”… because I said so! “Cuz” has never and will never be a word. This also applies to using “cause” as a shortened form of because. It has an entirely different meaning!

5. Here’s the big one that will apply to every single course: NEVER USE “IDK”. Why? Because we want you to actually make an effort and try on your schoolwork! You never lose points for trying. Besides, “IDK” is also not a word! Students in an online class should read and remember these tips for success in any of their classes. When you login to a class, log out of these bad text message habits, and your grades will go up!

Links Library Here you can find some helpful links to information and tips that will help you during your high school career. From scholarship information, to SAT/ACT tips, there is something for any educational need. Check out the links below.

Arizona Financial Aid SAT/ACT Bulletin 5

October Scholarship Deadlines Websites for college bound students Pinnacle Education - www.pinnacleeducation.com


What’s Going on at Tempe West

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he staff at Pinnacle’s Tempe West site continue to display their dedication to our young people, and the efforts they make to empower each and every student. Whether it is Mr. Scott and the development of our Young Men’s Group, Ms. Saunders and her Graduation Lab or Mr. Poe and his tireless efforts in tutoring students in math. The adults on the Tempe West campus have continually shown how eager they are to help in the development and empowerment of our students. As the PC & E Director at the Tempe West site, Mr. Scott wears many hats. One of his areas of expertise is as the leader of our Young Men’s Group. On a weekly basis, Mr. Scott meets with the male students here at Tempe West. There are no tests and no grades given during this two hour meeting and the topics vary, but the theme is always the same; making good decisions. For many of our young men, Mr. Scott is their only positive role model and adult who honestly listens to them. From improved social skills to a greater sense of self-worth, the growth of the young men who attend Mr. Scott’s group is clearly evident. Ms. Mischara Saunders has only been a Site Instructor at Tempe West for a little over a year, but the impression she has made on both students and staff has been immense. Ms. Saunders’ attention to detail and ability to hold her students accountable has had an extremely positive effect on the entire campus. The way in which she interacts with her students has been infectious throughout our staff

ranks. It has challenged our entire staff to strive for the same positive learning environment in their labs. Recently, Ms. Saunders developed her Graduation Lab. This lab is designated for students who are within five credits of graduating. By developing this lab she created an atmosphere of both competiveness and companionship. This lab is also viewed as something attainable by other students and gives them something to strive for. One of the first things a person will notice when entering Ms. Saunders’ Graduation Lab is the work ethic of the students. Ms. Saunders has instilled a sense of confidence in her students by holding them accountable. Mr. Brenan Poe has only been a Site Instructor at Tempe West for two months, but has already had an incredible influence on students and the way they view mathematics. Mr. Poe has an extensive background in mathematics and has done everything possible to bring his experience to all of our students taking math classes. Although Brenan’s regular work day is from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m., he continually comes in early to assist both our AM & PM blocks with their math classes. Mr. Poe’s calm and approachable demeanor has allowed our students to turn their fear of what is a difficult subject for many, into a challenge which has given many students a confidence they never had before. Many new and exciting things are happening at Tempe West, but nothing more exciting than seeing young people reach their goals.

s p i T ont m e of th

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Parent Tip of the Month: Being a proactive and positive part of your child’s education makes a world of difference! We need your help as we work with your students and help them achieve their goals. They need you too! This Pinnacle Post is full of important and helpful information. Information like: AIMS testing, Graduation, Scholarships, Elluminate, ACT/ SAT testing, Student Help Desk, etc. Student Tip of the Month: Both the ACT and SAT testing websites have a “question of the day” available to students to help you prepare for the exams. Check them out, and subscribe so they come right to your inbox! See page 2.

Check Out Our Student Support Website! innovatedstudentsupport.wordpress.com Number: 1.888.567.1844 or 480.755.8222 x1720 Email: supportdesk@pin-ed.com Live Chat Link: https://sas.elluminate.com/m.jnlp?sid=2009200&password=M.6321 63CDC0C7F00DB013F74E6E6796 Hours: 8am-8pm (Mon-Fri) Why we are here: Here you can find useful tips, tricks, and tutorials that will help students successfully navigate and complete their online course. Student’s and parent’s can contact us via email, live chat, phone, or by checking out the website to get all of their technical and support questions answered! We are here for you, so let us know how we can help. Pinnacle Education - www.pinnacleeducation.com

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ATTENTION: Graduation is coming Fall AIMS testing and Scholarships are available!! is almost here!

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Who: All Juniors and Seniors who have not successfully passed the Reading, Writing or Math AIMS tests are required to test. Remember, passing scores in each of those subject areas is a graduation requirement.

ull-time Pinnacle students who have met all of their graduation requirements by November 17th, 2010 are eligible to participate in the December Graduation Ceremony. These students may also apply for either (or both) the Challenge or Excellence Pinnacle Scholarships The Pinnacle Challenge and Excellence Scholarship application forms and information are available on the Counselor’s Corner website: http://pinnaclecounselorscorner. squarespace.com/scholarshipinformation/. Here you will find all the information you need to apply for a scholarship. Scholarship applications are due on Wednesday, November 17th. While you are at Counselor’s Corner, take a look around; there is a lot of great information available to both parents and students. Fall 2010 Graduation will be held on Wednesday, December 15th, 2010. The ceremony will begin

What: Reading, Writing, Math AIMS tests. Where: Site students test at their site. Contact your Site Instructor for details.

promptly at 7:00 pm. Graduation will be held at the Mesa Convention Center, building C, at 201 North Center Street in Mesa. Guests should arrive around 6:30 pm. If you have questions about anything in regards to Graduation, please contact your Site Instructor or Virtual Guidance Counselor. For Scholarship questions, please contact Stephanie Munro at 480 755-8222 x2916, or smunro@pined.com.

Virtual students (full-time only, concurrent students test with their home school) test at various locations throughout the state. If you believe you need to test, and have not been notified of your testing location, please contact your Virtual Guidance Counselor at 480 755-8222 x2965. When: Times vary by location. Writing: Tuesday, October 26 Reading: Wednesday, October 27 Math: Thursday, October 28 The Arizona Department of Education also provides practice AIMS tests for students to prepare. See them at: https://www.ideal.azed. gov/p/aims.

Art from Our Mesa Campus

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Pinnacle Phone Contacts

Departments

Office: 480.755.8222

English: x2734 Social Studies: x2720

Long Distance: 1.888.567.1844

Math: x2748

email: pinnacle@pin-ed.com

Science: x2729 Student Services: x2965

Follow Us!

Electives: x2745

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Inspirational Quote: “The only people who never fail are those who never try.” - Ilka Chase

www.pinnacleeducation.com 3225 S. Hardy, Tempe, AZ 85282 Tel: 480.755.8222

Fax: 480.755.8111


Pinnacle Post - October 2010