Visible Learning @ Johnson Elementary School

This is what visible learning looks like!  At Johnson Elementary School, our scholars are encouraged and supported by an amazing staff of teachers and professionals to find their passion, develop understanding, skills and strategies in all academic areas, to be productive and to dream big.  Creativity and collaboration, technology and purposeful instruction are woven together into each day and every learning experience.  Our young scholars and teachers work together to ensure that each student is on a path to success and ready for an outstanding future.  This is what learning looks like at Johnson Elementary School!  Go Jaguars!

Christina Wesley-Willis, Principal

Johnson Elementary School

Magnolia Kindergarten OUTDOOR Classroom Campfires!

Outdoor Classroom Design

Mrs. Glah’s Strengths Based Collaborative Group Jobs

Mrs. Glah’s Outdoor Classroom Inspiration Video

David Thornburg’s work not only helped change my thinking but my classroom environment. When Amanda mentioned the outside changes happening on the Magnolia Campus I immediately knew those huge, grassy treed areas between the buildings would be the perfect next step in redesign! The students had already helped with the inside, why not the outside?

After we did our project on classroom redesign I wanted to dig deeper and incorporate some new elements. I wanted students to work together in teams this time to make an end product to present. Ed Hidalgo was gracious enough after our visit to Qualcomm to share with me more background information on what they are using at Thinkabit to guide their strength based work. I then adapted it “Kindie” style to our own Collaborative Learning Group Jobs.

Earth Day Week was the perfect launchpad and the kids had a blast with their designs. It was amazing to see them so engaged and really shine!

The next phase would be students developing fundraising strategies, utilizing community resources and grants. The actual hands on creation of the spaces is still a while down the road but at least we have a start! 

Niki Glah, Kindergarten Teacher

Magnolia Elementary School

Emerald EmSTEAM wins California Career Technical Education Award

EMS Renderings

EmSTEAM has been awarded a three year California Career Technical Education Incentive Grant (CTEIG) to develop a career technical education pathway for:

  • Information and Communications Technologies: Information Support and Services, Networking, Software and Systems Development and Games and Simulation
  • Engineering and Architecture: Engineering Technology, Engineering Design, Environmental Engineering and Architectural Design.  

EmSTEAM will be the first middle school in the County to offer a high quality curriculum and instruction aligned with the California CTE Model Curriculum Standards and provide a coherent sequence of CTE courses.  This will allow EmSTEAM students the opportunity to transition to a high school education program that leads to a career pathway or attainment of employment upon graduation from high school.  We will emphasize quality career and college readiness including counseling and leadership development.  We will continue to provide and bolster opportunities for our students to participate in after school, extended day, and out-of-school job shadows, competitions, and other learning opportunities.

Steven Bailey, Principal

Emerald, EmSTEAM Magnet School


GMS Pivotal Moments – 8th Grade College Trips

On Friday, April 22, and Saturday, April 23, the Greenfield Team took another significant step in providing our 8th graders Pivotal Moments.  In a span of 36 hours, our team toured five college campuses over three Southern California counties.  Prior to the trip, we involved parents and guardians in a meeting with students in our theater to reinforce the significance of these trips and the importance of a college-going mindset for both students and parents.

On Friday, 160 8th graders visited SDSU, Point Loma, & UCSD.  Students toured campuses, interacted with current students, and cheered on the Tritons to a quadruple-overtime victory over the Aztecs in water polo.

On Saturday, 125 students began their day at UCLA.  They witnessed another quadruple-overtime collegiate water polo event as the #2 Bruins defeated #3 Stanford.  Students toured the historic Westwood campus and left inspired (and exhausted).  The two-day event wrapped up at UC Irvine for a brief visit.

What made this experience even more significant for students is that Greenfield team members shared their passion for their own universities with students.  History Teacher Will Stuchell served as the students’ tour guide at SDSU, his alma mater, and SECA Stephanie Christian (current Aztec) also supported the experience for students.  English Teacher Aimi Ah Sing helped coordinate the visit to her alma mater at Pt. Loma.  Current student tour guides took smaller groups of our students through the campus and answered quality questions from Greenfield students about the college experience and what it takes to gain admission and be successful.  While at UCLA, Principal Greg Calvert led students on a walking tour of the dorms, Bruin Walk, the Hall of Champions, the quad, and north campus, including the sculpture garden with jacarandas in spring bloom.  

These ongoing efforts are focused on creating Pivotal Moments for students to help them improve their college-going mindset and build skills to help them succeed in the field of education.  This experience was made available to all 8th grade GMS students with transportation costs provided by site allocations.  Our team made individual efforts to encourage every student to attend.  As a result, over 70% of our class of 2016 will promote to high school with concrete experiences on university campuses and an improved mindset that they will attend college.

It is critical to acknowledge the entire team effort that it took from site and district staff to create this opportunity for our students:  

  • Office staff for the organization and support prior to, days of, and post. 
  • Cafeteria and custodial staff for organizing food and ensuring an illuminated pick-up area upon our return to school.
  • Special Education instructional staff who advocated strongly that we get one student on the trip who mistakenly remained on campus. Our staff coordinated the rendezvous effort, and he attended both days.
  • Health Office staff for providing detailed, organized health info and training. 
  • Counseling and administrative staff for helping with the parent meeting.
  • District Transportation staff and Bus Drivers for their coordination and teamwork.
  • Staff on site who provided instruction for students who did not attend the trip.
  • The entire G-House team for supporting the trip.

The most rewarding feedback from students included simple comments like, “I’m going to Point Loma.”  Another student responded to a question about why he liked UCSD more than the other schools, he said, “It just fit me more.”  With more experiences and conversations like these, we will continue to create Pivotal Moments that will inspire students to success beyond their education in Cajon Valley schools.

Gregory Calvert, Principal

Greenfield Middle School


Springing Into Action at W.D. Hall

We’re springing into action at W.D. Hall!  Students are engaged in hands-on and personalized learning experiences through STEM units, Genius Hour projects, and blended learning classrooms.  With the help from volunteers and donations from Home Depot, our first graders built and planted a garden which has been a beautiful addition to our campus.  Third graders have investigated the migration and threats to Monarch Butterflies.  They wrote letters to the Water Conservation Garden and Ms. Smartyplants herself responded to their letters by providing an assembly for students. They also built butterfly gardens to help expand the Monarch Butterfly population.  Fourth and fifth grade students are investigating topics of interest during Genius Hour and are coming up with incredible solutions to problems such as pollution and hunger.  They even have a 3D printer which is helping to make their ideas and creations a reality.  Second graders are using tools such as Google Draw and digital newsletter templates to develop animal habitats.  Kindergarten students, along with others, are learning to use the Engineering Design Process through which they ask, imagine, plan, create and improve.  Student collaboration has been a focus at Hall this year and it’s amazing to see their growth and development. These kids know how to work together!  Our teachers and classified staff have all worked together to embrace numerous changes this year and to continue to make this an incredible place for students to learn. Way to go Hall!


Colleen Newman, Principal

W.D. Hall Elementary School

Rancho San Diego – At RSD…The Best We Can Be!

Rancho San Diego Elementary teachers are exploring different approaches and techniques for personalized learning and are utilizing technology to help students learn and grow!  Embracing applications such as Google classroom, DefinedSTEM, STMath, and Lexia Core 5 – RSD students and teachers can visibly see student progress on a daily basis. Students engage in their learning in a clean, safe, and inviting campus focused on student success for all. RSD is providing access to challenging and meaningful learning opportunities for every student.  Each and every day, RSD students are engaging in collaboration and critical thinking.  We expand our communication skills and embrace our creativity to make RSD the best we can be!

Cherie Wall, Principal

Rancho San Diego Elementary School

Los Coches Creek Offers Everyone a 21st Century Learning Experience

Student engagement and interest expound at LCC thanks to our incredible teaching staff! Student choice, project based learning and collaboration are in evidence across the campus, as are high student energy and enthusiasm. From teams of students collaborating to design personalized digital magazines, to individuals expressing their outstanding artistic abilities in Art and English classes, to teachers working together to offer high quality co-taught lessons, LCC offers everyone a 21st century learning experience.

Dana Stevenson, Principal

Los Coches Creek Middle School

Cajon Valley and Senator Joel Anderson Welcome League of Innovative Schools to San Diego

Digital Promise looks forward to another League of Innovative Schools meeting, co-hosted by Cajon Valley Union School District and Vista Unified School District. The spring meeting will be held in partnership with the ASU GSV Summit in San Diego, California from April 17-20, 2016.

  • On Sunday, we’ll kickoff the meeting with a special TEDx Digital Promise League of Innovative Schools event.
  • On Monday and Tuesday, we’ll join a community of hand-selected educators at ASU GSV’s Leading Educator Program at the ASU GSV Summit.
  • On Wednesday, we’ll conclude with school site visits to to Cajon Valley and Vista Unified School District.