Opinion: Taos Cyber Magnet takes whole-child approach to learning

By Norma Eldridge, retired teacher living in Taos
Posted 8/8/19

Taos Cyber Magnet School is a great educational alternative for students who learn and function better in a small environment, who have the desire and the developing ability to work …

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Opinion: Taos Cyber Magnet takes whole-child approach to learning

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Taos Cyber Magnet School is a great educational alternative for students who learn and function better in a small environment, who have the desire and the developing ability to work independently at their own pace and who may want individual tutoring and encouragement when needed.

The ninth through 12th grade student population is diverse, representative of our diverse community. Alexsis Blake created a unique learning center, and Kate Jensen has continued to meet the needs of the students with a truly whole-child approach. With guidance and discipline and high (though reasonable) expectations, our students blossom and achieve.

They appreciate Jensen's firm, fair, compassionate concern and expertise. They learn the joy of succeeding at difficult tasks, where to go for help (and that it is OK to seek help) and how to collaborate with others. Cyber Magnet is particularly beneficial for our students not needing nor wanting the distractions of larger classes and for those with quieter, shyer personalities who may be overlooked in bigger classes.

Jensen arranges for additional qualified adults to come in to help them with learning science, math, yoga, health and well-being. They also have fundraising events so they are able to take a couple of field trips during the year. For physical activity they walk every day. Being a walker myself, I love seeing our teens develop an appreciation for this life-long pleasure and healthy habit.

I am a retired math teacher who has been tutoring at Taos Cyber Magnet School for four years. I have found it to be more than just another charter, just another alternative - or just putting students in front of a computer all day. Watching these students grow and mature over the course of a school year - academically and in their attitudes, behavior, respect, tolerance of others' differences and belief in themselves - is inspiring. Their appreciation makes my effort and time meaningful and worthwhile.

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