our program

Our Program : Academics




Through the combination of our staff and volunteers, we strive to provide one-on-one tutoring to our students. During the academic hour with our elementary school students, we work on homework completion, reading, and math. We work closely with teachers at Bells Mill Elementary School to supplement and support classroom instruction. The teachers have also generously given their time to identify areas of need for individual students, often providing supplemental materials for use during Scotland Storm academic sessions. We are working to support the County's Science of Reading initiative.

During two academic sessions with our middle school students, we focus even more on homework completion and test preparation. Again, we coordinate with middle school teachers about individual student needs. The large majority of middle schoolers who regularly attend our program are on Cabin John Middle School's quarterly Honor Roll.

We strive to provide emotional support, individualized tutoring, and a caring, quiet environment that makes learning more fun and rewarding. We believe that our students learn to trust our staff and volunteers, and also learn to trust and support each other. We believe in our students, and strive to help them believe in themselves even more.

Basic Skills Support

Scotland Storm strives to improve basic reading and math skills through activities designed to teach and reinforce math and reading fluency. Depending on the needs of individual students, these activities include:

  • Math function using flash cards and enrichment programs such as Tangy Tuesday
  • Sight words flash cards for support spelling and vocabulary
  • Assigned reading passages and written questions and responses about the passages to improve comprehension
  • Homework monitoring and assistance to reinforce math and reading curriculums

Digital Enrichment

Scotland Storm purchased laptop computers and provides them to students during program sessions. We monitor student use of the computers to complete homework. We also use the computers for:

  • Time-mediated academically-oriented games to improve basic math skills and attention to tasks
  • Typing homework assignments and writing projects to improve speed and accuracy
  • Teaching basic skills for using the internet as a research tool

Consistent Guidance

Student volunteers from Churchill High School and adults from the community are a critical part of Scotland Storm's success. Volunteers are assigned to several students for each academic year, enabling our volunteers to provide consistent support and guidance. With the permission of our students' families, we track student homework completion, grades, and attendance. We also consult with their teachers at Bells Mill Elementary to identify specific needs for individual students.

We are sensitive to student perceptions that school discipline may seem more punitive for underserved students. We strive for consistent, gentle persuasion and guidance.

Charting Success

Scotland Storm tries to follow and supplement the Evidence of Learning Framework created by Montgomery County Public Schools. MCPS measures student academic growth using three different domains. The domains are growth in the classroom, district measures, and external measures.

MCPS measures classroom performance by report card grades; District performance by English/reading and math assessments; and external performance by MAP-R/M assessments. Students that meet 2 out of 3 measures are deemed ready for the next grade level. Students that do not meet 2 out of 3 measures receive support and reteaching of needed skills. We work closely with Bells Mill Elementary and Cabin John MS teachers and administrators to identify our students' academic needs.

We track student attendance, homework completion, and grades constantly.