It’s actually Y.A.L.E. = Yet Another Learning Experience. But at its inception, saying one was “going to Yale” was half the fun!
Y.A.L.E. had its start at McLeod Academy. One of the teachers at the time, Tracy Corell, wanted to share her passion for knitting with her students. Knitting wasn’t part of the curriculum…Y.A.L.E. was born. The idea for having staff, parents and students share their passions and learn with and from each other took off. Early Y.A.L.E. activities included sessions on kite making, paper airplanes, quilting, math puzzles and science experiments and creating with duct tape (before it was a “thing”).
Summit focused the Y.A.L.E. program into multiple aspects: a physical component, a community project/service learning component and a financial literacy component facilitated through Junior Achievement. Since then our kids have participated in gymnastics classes, taekwondo classes, swimming, yoga, ice skating and more. In 2019/20, Summit students are rock climbing. Parents and grandparents have played a key role in transporting our kids to these classes and lessons.
During the first few years of the service learning component, Pat’s students took on the responsibility for organizing and implementing a blood drive. The Char Hegland Memorial Blood Drive was well organized and successful in the hands of Pat’s students. Char was the long-time office manager, starting at Linn Academy, staying through McLeod Academy through the start of Summit Schools. In previous years, Char had organized a blood drive for school staff. As a well loved member of the McLeod and later Summit family, it was fitting for Pat’s students to honor Char’s memory with their work on the blood drive.
Since then service projects have covered a broad range of events and opportunities to connect to our community: Kindergarteners have worked with Head Start kids to write a play for parents; PreK students have loved stray animals and baked treats for the Cedar Rapids Humane Society, we’ve hosted can drives and penny drives, we’ve packed meals for Horizons and tied blankets for the Madge Phillips Center.
Y.A.L.E. has truly been yet another learning experience for Summit students!