Darlington School: Private Boarding School in Georgia Episode 73: A Glimpse Into Active Learning in the Middle Grades
Darlington School: Private Boarding School in Rome, GA
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Episode 73: A Glimpse Into Active Learning in the Middle Grades

September 1, 2022 | 409 views

Welcome to Episode 73 of The Darlington Podcast! 

In this episode, Director of Pre-K to 8 Hope Jones talks with middle grades teachers Andrew Beckman, science; Ashley Evans, Spanish; and Kevin Ivester ('87), math, about active learning and the skills-based curriculum in the middle grades. They share active learning stories from their classrooms and touch on why they think Darlington's skills-based curriculum benefits students at this age.

Hope Jones has served as director of Pre-K to 8 since 2014. Prior to her work here, she was assistant head of lower school at Viewpoint School in Calabasas, Calif. There, she was also primary and lower school curriculum coordinator, co-chair of the Technology in Curriculum Task Force, and communication liaison for K-5 school publications. Hope holds a B.A. in Elementary Education and English from the University of Alabama – Huntsville as well as an M.A. in Middle Level Curriculum and Instruction from George Mason University in Fairfax, Va. She has 15 years of teaching experience at schools in Alabama, Virginia, Washington, D.C., and California.

Andrew Beckman has taught science in the middle grades since 2017. He also serves as the head coach of the middle school JV cross country teams, assistant coach of middle school soccer and swim/dive, and robotics coach. He holds a B.S. in Chemistry from The University of Alabama, where he served as a chemistry tutor and lab researcher. 

Ashley Evans has taught Spanish at Darlington since 2008. She serves as the head coach of the boys and girls middle school varsity cross country teams. She holds bachelor’s degrees in journalism and Spanish and an M.Ed. in Foreign Language Education with Certification in ESL from the University of Georgia. 

Kevin Ivester (’87) has taught math at Darlington since 1995 and currently teaches middle grades. He holds a B.S. from the Georgia Institute of Technology, where he played four years of soccer. Kevin coached middle school basketball for more than two decades and currently coaches middle school golf and soccer. 


The Darlington Podcast is produced by the Communication Office and hosted by various members of the school community. Episodes are released each Thursday morning and available on most podcast platforms (search for The Darlington Podcast in your podcast player). Once new episodes are posted, you'll also be able to find them at www.darlingtonschool.org/podcast. Please subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts so that you'll get the latest episode each week! 

The Darlington Podcast intro music was written and performed by Elliot Luitwieler ('22) and Kathryn Davidson ('22). Shelley Daniel, theatre director, lends her voice, and editing and production is handled by Maddie Fox, content manager. 

If you have ideas for future episodes or have any questions about The Darlington Podcast, please email communications@darlingtonschool.org