Most of the students that stream into the 7,300-square-foot Learning Commons at Notre Dame-Cathedral Latin School in Chardon probably won’t be looking for books. And Amy Myers, the school’s media specialist, is just fine about it. Instead, students will browse the web on one of the nine smart TVs, use the distance learning room to talk to someone across the world or broadcast the announcements every morning. Those skills, the 38-year-old says, will stick with them for the long run. And as a marathon runner, going the distance is a Myers specialty.
We offer students over 50 [summer reading] books. These books were chosen by all of our teachers, not just the English department. Giving students more choice makes reading a little more pleasurable because you’re not being told, “You have to read this.”
When we all came back from summer, we had a day when we all dedicated about an hour and a half to getting in the group with the teacher who chose the book that you read.
Some people Skyped with the author. The group that read October Sky actually went outside and shot off rockets. The group that read Harry Potter, they played Quidditch in the gym. It was just refreshing to bring the enjoyment back.
In the Learning Commons, we have a state-of-the-art studio where we broadcast our daily announcements to the whole school. That is completely student run.
We encourage that collaboration and the noise, working together and taking initiative. It is no longer a place to get stuff, it’s more of a place to make stuff.
We just started the distance learning this year with an anatomy class. They got to watch an autopsy and interact with an Ohio State [University] pathology student.
The students thought that was really cool just to have that opportunity.
As teenagers, they’re getting inundated with information 24 hours a day, seven days a week. So the burden’s on them to judge that material. I just hope that we’re doing what we can to equip them with the skills to do so.
When you need to find a doctor or you need to find a good car, you need to find good quality information.
You have this idea of how things are supposed to work, but when you give students control, you’re really surprised by what they can do with it.
My very first marathon was Chicago.
I had a stress fracture just two months before that. So it wasn’t a very successful marathon. I was lucky to finish. But Cleveland, I ran in 2011. I trained really hard and I qualified for Boston.
[The Boston Marathon] is just an experience like no other. I don’t want to sound arrogant or anything, but I’m really proud that I was able to complete that.
It is goal-oriented. You’ve got to have goals to work toward. I think running helps me with that, realizing that I’m not going to accomplish everything today, but one day I will get there as long as I keep trying.