Modern language arts standards include speaking and listening skills which are a part of the Common Core Curriculum and the Illinois Learning Standards. While these standards are practiced in individual classes, Emmons incorporates these standards at the next level. Each month throughout the school year, a grade level hosts a spirit assembly where the whole school community is present, including many parents and grandparents. Each spirit assembly focuses on a different theme and provides students the opportunity to practice their speaking and listening skills in a public setting. For example, the middle school students reinforced our school wide kindness theme from 2018-19 and began this year with a kindness video they created as they interviewed people throughout the school. The assembly concluded with the whole student body mingling on the gym floor and stopping periodically to ask each other specific questions. Most recently, the 5th graders engaged the audience during Red Ribbon Week. Each student shared their future career ambitions and explained that they were already preparing for these careers by developing a strong mind and body. Before the end of the year, each grade level will have performed in front of the whole student body, even the kindergarteners!
Spirit assemblies also allow us time to acknowledge some wonderful successes at Emmons. We recognize our student athletes and share Rave Reviews. Any student or faculty member can nominate a person to receive a Rave Review for doing something exceptional. Students write about peers or faculty who have gone above and beyond! Faculty members often acknowledge an unexpected act of kindness such as students who volunteer to help clean up after the lunch period during their recess. Each Rave Review is read aloud while the receiver stands to be recognized. Spirit assemblies are just one example of how Emmons integrates curriculum to create well-rounded students who develop important life skills alongside their academic goals.