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APEX

APEX Mission Statement:

The Merrick UFSD is committed to an educational program that recognizes individual student abilities, strengths and needs. Children who demonstrate superior cognitive abilities, critical and creative thinking, exemplary academic performance and motivation to be an independent learner require supplemental instruction and exposure to a variety of challenging and higher order critical and thinking experiences. Providing students with enhanced differentiated instruction enables us to nurture and develop students’ higher level thinking skills. The Merrick UFSD meets the needs of these targeted students through differentiated classroom instruction, participation in our APEX program, and additional enrichment activities.

 

APEX Program Objectives:
  1. Foster social-emotional well being in all students
  2. Encourage students to become self-motivated learners
  3. Enhance and demonstrate divergent and creative thinking through fluency, flexibility, originality and elaboration
  4. Develop metacognitive skills
  5. Use communication skills that will enhance group interaction and student learning
  6. Develop the ability to demonstrate knowledge in a variety of ways
  7. Demonstrate authentic learning through real-life problem solving
  8. Utilize creative problem solving to develop new ideas 
  9. Foster independent responsibility and accountability
  10. Incorporate technology as a tool for life-long learning

APEX Curriculum

The APEX program offers supplemental instruction to qualifying students in the 3rd through 6th grade. APEX students meet in a pull-out format for a total of four and one-half hours per 6 day cycle. Grades three and four meet twice during the cycle and grades five and six meet once per cycle.

The APEX curriculum is meant to be an enrichment experience that exposes students to more complex and diverse topics. It provides students the opportunity to examine topics in depth and with more rigor. Instruction in productive thinking skills is integrated into the curriculum to help students develop their ability to problem solve and think critically, creatively, and analytically.

Topics of study have included and may include the following:

Third Grade
Inventions
Archaeology
Engineering
Robotics
Hands-On-Equations
Fourth Grade
Inventions
Archaeology
Engineering
Robotics
Mystery Class
Fifth Grade
Economics
Stock Market Game
Engineering Robotics
Mystery Class
Sixth Grade
Architecture
Bridge Building
Engineering
Robotics
Mystery Class

Math Olympiads

All APEX students in grades 4-6 participate in the Mathematical Olympiads for Elementary and Middle Schools (MOEMS). MOEMS is a nonprofit public foundation, which provides opportunities for children to engage in creative problem solving activities that develop a child’s ability to reason, use logic, be resourceful, and occasionally to be ingenious.

Students will participate in five monthly Olympiad contests.The competitions will be held during APEX time during the designated months below.

November 
December 
January 
February 
March

Third Grade

Archaeology
Hello Third Graders!
This is going to be one exciting year for you as you learn about archaeology first hand! First, we will learn about cultural universals present in all cultures. Next, we will practice our knowledge of these universals as we try to decode a fictitious culture together. Then it's on to teamwork and creating own own secret cultures. We will create artifacts to represent our fictitious cultures and each  team's artifacts will be burried. Finally, we will become archaeologists as we excavate another team's artifacts and try to figure out what their culture is all about.

Fourth Grade

Archaeology
Hello Fourth Graders!
This is going to be one exciting year for you as you learn about archaeology first hand! First, we will learn about cultural universals present in all cultures.

Next, we will practice our knowledge of these universals as we try to decode a fictitious culture together. Then it's on to teamwork and creating own own secret cultures. We will create artifacts to represent our fictitious cultures and each team's artifacts will be burried. Finally, we will become archaeologists as we excavate another team's artifacts and try to figure out what their culture is all about.

Fifth Grade

Exploring Money
Money makes the world go round... Does it really?  This year you will explore the history of money. You will also learn how money is made and you will learn how to detect counterfeit money.  

What would you do with $100,000.00? You are going to learn about the stock market and participate in a nationally simulated stock market game.  You will create a stock investment company and buy and sell stocks as you try to "strike it rich". You will stay on top of current events, become researchers and present your findings at the end of the year.

Here are some websites you might like to visit to learn more about money.

What Kids Should Know About Money:
http://content.time.com/time/specials/packages/article/0,28804,2018865_2018867_2018868,00.html

Sixth Grade

Architecture
This year we we will explore large structures and what it takes to build them. We will learn about skyscrapers, domes, dams, tunnels, and bridges.

Living on Long Island we are surrounded by bridges. We need to cross them to get to the city and neigboring states. Have you ever thought about how bridges came to be or how they stay up? After learning about bridges you will form engineering companies to build your own toothpick bridges. At the end of the year we will have a competition to see which bridge can hold the most weight.

May the best bridge win!