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Cindy Hayden: Sunshine at St. Philip Neri Catholic School

Thursday, September 14, 2017 by Elizabeth Anthony

Cindy Hayden Notre Dame ACE Academies

When I think of Cindy Hayden, a veteran teacher at St. Philip Neri Catholic School with 36 years of experience, I think of sunshine. Cindy exudes positivity, enthusiasm, and love in everything she does, especially when she interacts with her first-grade students. When I entered her classroom for the first time last year, I saw smiling students working hard on meaningful assignments–a sure sign of leadership by an outstanding teacher.

Let Us Begin Building!

Monday, September 11, 2017 by Michael Zelenka

Michael Zelenka Let Us Begin Building

My daughters Elizabeth (age 6) and Catherine (age 4), constantly create. Whether coloring blackline pictures, drawing freehand, cutting things out, glueing, taping, dancing, or singing, they create incessantly.

Returning to the Classroom

Thursday, August 31, 2017 by Karen Gilmore - ACE 23, Baton Rouge

Karen Gilmore ACE 23 Return to the Classroom

Returning to my school after my second ACE summer felt like how I imagined Lucy felt when she returned to Narnia through the wardrobe after trying to relay her experiences to her siblings to no avail in The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis. Ascension Catholic High School was a place where I experienced exciting and difficult things, where I forged relationships with people most of my friends and family were likely never going to meet, and where my worldview changed profoundly.

Teaching Tolerance

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Teaching Tolerance Monica Kowalski, Ph.D.

In the wake of the horrific events in Charlottesville, Virginia, knowing that racism and violence still have a prominent place in our nation is frustrating and embarrassing. I am acutely aware of my own white privilege as I write this, knowing that it is my place of privilege that allows me to just be frustrated and ashamed of this situation rather than imminently threatened and afraid. My heart goes out to those facing discrimination and violence and I pray for greater tolerance and love in our communities.

Teachers as Translators: Lighting a Fire

Friday, August 11, 2017 by Luke Janicki - ACE 22, Peoria


ACE Teaching Fellows graduate Luke Janicki (ACE 22 - Peoria) offers a two-part reflection on his experiences in the classroom and how he used his Spanish speaking skills to create connections in the broader school community. Part two is below and part one is titled, "Teachers as Translators: Doing the Unexpected".

Teachers as Translators: Doing the Unexpected

Tuesday, August 08, 2017 by Luke Janicki - ACE 22, Peoria

Luke Janicki ACE Teaching Fellows 22 Peoria

ACE Teaching Fellows graduate Luke Janicki (ACE 22 - Peoria) offers a two-part reflection on his experiences in the classroom and how he used his Spanish speaking skills to create connections in the broader school community. Part one is below.

ACE Summer: "Hear Our Prayer"

Friday, July 28, 2017 by By: Mary Grace Mangano - ACE 22, Chicago

ACE Summer Hear Our PrayerPhoto Credit: Andrew Hamaty

Morning light puddles on the moss-covered stones of the Grotto of Our Lady of Lourdes. My breath, after my run, slows and my knees find the kneeler, recently wet with dew. I imitate Saint Bernadette and gaze up at Our Lady. From her perch among the stones, she seems to look right at me, expectantly.

ACE Teaching Fellows Learn to Leverage Technology and Boost Student Performance

Tuesday, July 25, 2017 by Elizabeth Anthony

Higher-Powered Learning Blog Teaching Fellows

The Alliance for Catholic Education (ACE) is perhaps best known for its Teaching Fellows program, which forms talented, faith-filled college graduates to renew and transform Catholic school classrooms. Each year, ACE selects over 90 of the most talented, faith-filled, community-oriented college graduates in the world to begin its two-year service-through-teaching Masters of Education. After two summers of rigorous academic courses and two school years of full-time teaching in a Catholic school as well as completing online coursework, ACE Teaching Fellows graduate as licensed teachers with a M.Ed. and a lifelong commitment to Catholic education. (Side note: Ian Corbett, Mary Kate Veselik, and Sean Wolohan are all graduated ACE Teaching Fellows who taught at Holy Angels this year!).

Recipe for Fellowship: Fr. Joe's Summer Cookie Socials

Monday, July 17, 2017 by By: Darby Evans, ACE Communications

Fr. Joe Carey, CSC ACE Chaplain

Cookies equal community.

The recipe may be simple, but as Fr. Joe Carey, C.S.C. sees it, fellowship in ACE doesn’t need to be complicated. Every Monday, Fr. Joe, ACE chaplain and priest-in-residence at Ryan Hall, opens his kitchen to the ACE community. Around dinner time, a small group of baking enthusiasts crafts dozens of cookies, and then the larger community gathers later that night after Mass to enjoy the treats.

The Embody Love Club

Monday, July 10, 2017 by Mary Ostrowski - ACE 22, Dallas

Mary Ostrowski ACE 22 Embody Love Club

Sometimes, as teachers, we spend too much time talking. Sometimes, we worry so much about transmitting our knowledge to our students, that we forget about the art of listening. We forget that it is not our voices that matter most in our classrooms, but those of our students. We seek so desperately to be heard, when in reality, it is our job to hear, to make our students feel known and acknowledged.

Finding God in the Song

Monday, July 03, 2017 by By. Darby Evans, ACE Communications

Emma Fleming Finding God in the Song Darby Evans

When Emma Fleming was discerning her next steps as a senior at the University of Notre Dame, she listened for God’s direction. She found her answer in song—a Notre Dame Folk Choir song, to be exact.

ACE Summer's Spikeball Subculture

Thursday, June 29, 2017 by Darby Evans, ACE Communications

ACE Summer Spikeball

Four people stand in ready position on South Quad. Their knees are slightly bent, their eyes trained on the yellow ball as it bounces neatly off the circular net in the grass. It’s twilight on Notre Dame’s campus—fireflies have already started to congregate on the lawn—but for these four players, the rest of the world has melted away. For 20 minutes, they are not graduate students or instructors or administrators. All that matters is the net, the ball, and the next move. All that matters is Spikeball.

“Long Days, Short Weeks”: A Reflection on ACE Summer

Friday, June 09, 2017 by Darby Evans - ACE 22, Fort Worth

Darby Evans ACE Summer

I stepped out of Dillon Chapel, carefully cradling the paper lantern I held in my arms. I felt the the heavy, humid South Bend summer air descend, and my eyes adjusted to the darkness that had settled on South Quad during Mass. In the warm, electric glow of Praise and Worship, I had forgotten just how late it was–11:30 p.m., to be exact. It was the last night of the summer that the small group, spearheaded by songbirds David Chang and Rocielle Perez, had stayed after daily Mass to sing and pray. For our final meeting, we were writing our prayer requests on luminaries and, together, floating them into the sky at McGlinn Field.

Unveiling Our Community

Sunday, June 04, 2017 by Thomas Karam, ACE 24 - Philadelphia

Thomas Karam, ACE 24 Philadelphia

One of the most exciting parts of joining ACE is the opportunity to live in community and to grow alongside fellow teachers and friends. I assumed, though, that I would have to wait until summer for these moments of community to emerge. However, the April retreat provided exactly the type of community I hoped I would encounter in ACE—several months sooner than expected.

Go Praise the Lord! (a.k.a How to End a School Year)

Tuesday, May 30, 2017 by Mary Grace Mangano - ACE 22, Chicago

How to End a School Year

One of my seventh-grade boys penned a unique Easter reflection after I asked my class to think about what they would ask or say to Jesus. We had just prayed the Stations of the Cross during Holy Week.

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