Project Lead the Way (PLTW)
PLTW is the leading provider of rigorous and innovative Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics (STEM) education curricular programs used in middle and high schools across the U.S. STEM education is at the heart of today’s high-tech, high-skill global economy. For America to remain economically competitive, our next generation of leaders — the students of today — must develop the critical-reasoning and problem-solving skills that will help make them the most productive in the world. The PLTW curriculum is founded in the fundamental problem-solving and critical-thinking skills taught in traditional career and technical education (CTE), but at the same time integrates national academic and technical learning standards and STEM principles, creating what U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan calls one of the “great models of the new CTE succeeding all across the country.” PLTW was recently cited by the Harvard Graduate School of Education as a “model for 21st century career and technical education.
First Lego League
The First Lego League introduces children around the world to the fun and experience of solving real-world problems by applying Math, Science and Technology. Rockwell Automation makes it possible for students in 4th and 5th grade to form a team that is led by an MATC engineering student and eventually enter their creations into a competition held annually in the fall. This program serves to better prepare Vieau students for the material they will be introduced to in Project Lead the Way classes, which are offered to students in 6th-8th grade.
Learning for Life
Vieau School is an MPS model school for Learning for Life, a research-based character education program. This school-wide program teaches and empowers students to become responsible individuals by modeling positive character traits, career development, social skills, leadership and life skills. The program is funded through the United Way and is implemented by classroom teachers and a mentoring partnership with GE Healthcare. Volunteers from GE Healthcare visit classrooms once a month to teach the Learning for Life character trait of the month and to make important connections with Vieau students regarding the importance of integrity and personal development in the workplace.
Through a partnership with the Milwaukee Youth Symphony Orchestra, selected third and fourth grade students participate in MYSO Progressions, an introductory string training program that is directed toward minority elementary students. Second grade students are eligible for nomination to the program and then are selected by a MYSO committee. During third and fourth grade, these selected students receive private lessons on a string instrument of their choice three times per week. Lessons take place after school at the Milwaukee Youth Arts Center. After successful completion of the program, these students are then invited to audition for a seat in the Milwaukee Youth Symphony Orchestra. Instruments are provided for the students free of charge through the generosity of VH-1 Save the Music.
Danceworks Mad Hot Rhythm (MHR)
Danceworks Mad Hot Rhythm (formerly Mad Hot Ballroom and Tap) is an educational dance program for schoolchildren in the Greater Milwaukee area targeting primarily very low-income schools in Milwaukee’s central city. MHR provides desperately needed arts programming directly in the schools, while building artistic, academic and social skills among students. MHR strives to empower youth to stay in school, gain self-confidence and reach their full potential through the transformative power of dance.
The First Stage Children’s Theater is a nationally acclaimed company drawing annual audiences of more than 145,000 people. In addition to providing opportunities for Vieau students to experience theater first-and, First Stage has now entered into a partnership that provides scholarships for Theater Academy classes to select 2nd and 3rd grade students. Through a program offered once a week by the Community Learning Center, students are taught “Life Skills Through Stage Skills.” These classes develop imagination, concentration, voice, movement and improvisation skills. First Stage Theater Academy helps Vieau students take the next step towards becoming actors, but more importantly, as confident individuals.
The Wisconsin Conservatory of Music provides musical education and performance opportunities for students who desire a means of cultural enrichment and self-fulfillment. The Conservatory offers private lessons, class instruction, performances, a nationally recognized music library and programs that serve the entire Milwaukee community. The Conservatory demonstrates its commitment to the community by providing scholarships and financial aid to the musically talented, to the economically disadvantaged and to children and adults with disabilities. In this new partnership, Vieau School students are exposed to a variety of music styles through in-school concerts performed by professional musicians.
Students from Marquette University provide one-on-one tutoring to Vieau students. Through this program, Vieau students gain self-confidence and develop strong bonds with their tutors, leading to success in the classroom.
The Skylight Opera is committed to serving students throughout the MPS system, providing programming that includes touring shows, workshops and residences to over 25 MPS schools. The Skylight works with MPS teachers to provide multiple programs for different age groups throughout the school year. Vieau is one of Skylight’s Partnership Schools. A special month-long residency, Stories That Sing, features Skylight artists who work with students in the 4th-7th grades to turn art, music and drama into an original performance.
Through SHARP Literacy, Inc. and the Milwaukee Art Museum, Vieau students in Grades 2-5 are able to develop a strong appreciation of the arts. The Literacy Through the Power of Art! Program strives to supplement the work of the classroom teacher in teaching reading, research, writing and presentation skills. The mission of SHARP Literacy is to engage students in an imaginative learning experience through the use of art history and the visual arts, thereby enhancing existing science, social studies, oral and written language skills.
Gear Up Program
UWM’s GEAR UP program provides Vieau students with academic support and guidance that better prepares them for high school and college. The GEAR UP program strives to expose students and their families to college campuses and to increase their knowledge of post-secondary options, available financial aid and scholarships, high school courses needed to enter college and other entrance requirements.
Pre-college Summer Camps
Each year, approximately half of the Vieau School middle school population participates in at least one summer pre-college camp. Throughout the years, strong partnerships have been formed with various colleges around the state, including UW-Milwaukee, Marquette University, UW-Green Bay and UW-LaCrosse. Each year, participating students learn important skills needed for academic success in middle school and begin mapping their paths to college.
UWM students give their time and talents to tutor Vieau students in academics. The Vieau students love spending time with their tutors and the individual instruction helps students make progress in the classroom.
The String Academy of Wisconsin is one of our country’s model schools offering students ages 4-18 a comprehensive musical education with a focus on the violin, viola and cello. Through our partnership with SAW, selected second, third and fourth grade students at Vieau receive individual and group lessons on the violen by String Academy teachers once during the school week and once on the weekend at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee campus. All students who are selected receive full tuition scholarships through the generosity of SAW benefactors and the use of instruments through VH-1 Save the Music.