Event Recap: The Third Annual Tour de Brew

14 Oct

This Saturday, Spikeball founder and great friend to AGC, Chris Ruder, led a bike tour of Chicago Breweries. Three years ago, Ruder combined three great passions: bike trips, craft beer and innovative education to create the Tour de Brew. Participants in the third annual Tour de Brew biked over 20 miles to learn about the unique histories of 6 brewing companies.

10:00 am -10 riders meet at the Goose Island Barrel House in Humboldt park, an awe-inspiring 100,000+ square foot warehouse. We got a tour of the beautiful facility from Goose’s Ryan Tucker, who taught us all about the barrel-aging process, which imparts unique flavors from wine and whiskey barrels  to beers such as Bourbon County Stout, Sophie, Juliet, Lolita, Madame Rose, Gillian and Halia. We were fascinated by the journey of the barrels, which are recycled from vineyards and distilleries around the world, and will often be shipped to another vineyard or distillery after the aging process.


10:30 – Our first leg is a doozy – 7 miles in 45 minutes. We soak in the sun and fall colors as we cruise through Humboldt Park and all the way up to Belmont and Broadway.


11:15 – We arrive to Dry Hop just in time for a small taste and a history of the brew pup. Dry Hop’s young founder, originally a home-brewer, studied in Chicago and Munich and travels extensively to gather knowledge of brewing traditions and trends. As a small brew pub, Dry Hop does not distribute, but sells growlers and 32oz cans, filled to order.

IMG_766911:30 – We head west again, 4 miles in 25 minutes. We are a larger group now, having met a few more riders at Dry Hop. Riders are encouraged to jump on and off the tour based on their comfort level.



12:00 pm – Our riders have earned a break and some pizza at Revolution Brewery’s Kedzie location. Revolution began as a popular Logan Square Brew Pup and expanded rapidly, by popular demand, starting in 2012. Since moving into their massive brewery space in 2012, Revolution has become one of the largest producers of craft beer in Chicago. We learned that they are not done growing, and, as we speak, are busy knocking down walls to expand into the space next door. To keep up with demand for their canned brews, Revolution brews 24 hours a day, 5 days a week!

12:45 pm – After the last two legs of our journey, the 4 mile, 15 minute ride to Half Acre is a breeze.

1:00 pm – Half Acre brewing welcomes us with open arms, tastes aplenty and a fantastic introduction to their history. Half Acre was named after a tiny town which was incorporated by an would-be bar owner who was unable to acquire a liquor license from nearby townships due to his arrest history. The town earned the nickname “Devil’s Half Acre.” Half Acre launched their first few brews out of a contracted brewery in Wisconsin and began brewing their own beer only after growing their brand– a smart approach to scale!



1:50 pm – Our next stop, Begyle Brewing, is a blessed 4 minute ride away.

2:00 pm – Begyle’s approach to building their business was the most unique we’d seen yet. The co-founders, Paul and Kevin — who is a self-described “ex-accountant” — went to their local bars and said “we’re thinking of brewing beer, would you buy our beer?” Begyle’s local focus remains evident in their business practices today. Although Begyle has a dream contract with Mariano’s and Whole Foods, they still proudly refer to themselves as a “Community Supported Brewing Company,” and offer subscriptions to a “CSB,” inspired by the concept of Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) produce shares.

2:30 pm – Our group thins significantly for the final leg of the journey – only 7 riders remain for the trip to Rock Bottom Restaurant and Brewery, a 6 mile, 40 minute bike ride through busy Wrigleyville and into downtown traffic.

3:00 pm – After a beautiful day of long rides and short tours, we enjoy a seat on Rock Bottom’s rooftop. There, we recap the experiences of the day, discuss barriers to access to quality education, and plot our next craft brew centered activity.



We want to extend a huge Orca cheer to Chris for organizing this tour, all our guests for joining us, and our brewery partners for hosting us.





Join the Third Annual Tour de Brew

2 Oct

Tour de Brew

You are invited to join us at the third annual Tour de Brew, a Chicago brewery bike tour to benefit the Academy for Global Citizenship. Spikeball Inc. founder and bike and brew enthusiast Chris Ruder leads a tour of Chicago breweries, from big dogs like Goose Island to craft startups like Begyle and Finch’s, often years before they hit the mainstream.

An extremely qualified host, Chris biked 3,300 miles across the country, visited 50 states, and savored countless craft brews before his 30th birthday. Chris also launched a worldwide sporting phenomenon with 600 registered teams and 125,000 players. Check out this Esquire feature on Spikeball Inc.

Chris will lead riders on a brewery tour of the city rain, shine or snow. This tour’s schedule will be shared only with ticket holders and the ride will be capped at 40 riders for safety. Please ride safe and secure with a helmet and lock.

Space is Limited, Buy Your Tickets Today


Attention 7th Grade Parents: Spots In AGC Middle School Available Now!

30 Sep

AGC has a rare set of vacancies in 7th grade and is looking for students to enroll in 7th grade for this school year. This is an exciting opportunity for a parent of a 7th grader, as we typically have 10 applications for each available spot. For parents with younger children, the siblings of an enrolled student are given automatic priority in our lottery, so your 7th grader can open the door for his or her younger siblings to access AGC’s innovative and rigorous model for learning. Enroll today on our website.

gary writing

Why Enroll In AGC?

The Academy for Global Citizenship offers a relevant, engaging and challenging educational program for all children. Every child is held accountable for achieving rigorous academic standards. Our inquiry-based learning curriculum provides an opportunity for learners to construct meaning through concept-driven units of study. Students become environmentally and internationally minded by learning how their choices impact their community and ultimately the world. The Academy for Global Citizenship places an emphasis on the total growth of the developing child by addressing social, physical, linguistic, emotional and cultural needs in addition to academic development. As a community of learners; professionals, families, and teachers work collaboratively to ensure the learning environment supports high achievement.

Students thrive in a environment that respects their needs as developing young leaders, with project-based learning that provides tools and opportunities to impact their communities and the world beyond, daily wellness education that addresses their physical, social and emotional well-being, and a nutritious, 100% organic food program that is prepared from scratch by our in-house Chef, and often features produce grown right outside our doors in our edible schoolyard garden.

Academy for Global Citizenship

The Academy for Global Citizenship is an authorized International Baccalaureate (IB) Primary Years Program school. An IB authorization means we share a common philosophy with other IB schools around the world—a commitment to high quality, challenging, international education that AGC believes will give our students the knowledge and skills to be successful in the future.

We teach through:

  • cycle of inquiry grounded in concept-based central ideas.
  • Close collaboration among faculty, staff, and families.
  • Research-based methods supported by relevant and ongoing professional development and sharing of practice with teachers in other schools.
  • Holding all students accountable to high academic standards.
  • Using formative and summative assessment data to drive decision-making.

Students learn through:

  • A healthy, child-centered environment.
  • Curriculum organized into interdisciplinary Units of Inquiry.
  • Extended learning day with a balance of time spent on core academic subjects, physical activity, and enrichment.
  • A place-based education approach which honors the neighborhood and city in which our school exists.
  • rigorous and robust curriculum which challenges students to thinking deeply about what they are learning.

Our community collaborates through:

  • Sister school partnerships around the world including schools in Uganda and India.
  • Family engagement workshops centered around the school’s mission and vision and a plethora of volunteer opportunities.
  • A high school and college student internship program.
  • University partnerships including Northwestern, The School of the Art Institute, and University of Chicago.
  • The intentional sharing of practices at speaking engagements and conferences in addition to welcoming hundreds of visitors each year.


AGC welcomes your participation in your child’s education. At the Academy for Global Citizenship, we honor and recognize that parents are their child’s first teachers and we must partner with parents in their chilld’s education. To foster deep investment in the success of our students we encourage families to play an active role in the life of the school. At AGC you will find parents, teachers, and staff excited to collaborate to create the best learning environment for your child and to help your child access exemplary education opportunities in High School and beyond.


Here’s what our parents have to say about an AGC education:

I see my child making better choices in life. Nino has become aware of his surroundings and the environment more that I could have ever imagined possible. It is my hope that he carries these lessons throughout his life.”

“AGC’s organic food program has changed our eating habits at home! We are now cooking with different vegetables that we had never tasted before. Seth is more aware of the environment and is constantly wondering about what is good or bad for the earth.”

“AGC has changed the way we think about food and nutrition. Leila takes more time to appreciate our natural world. She has learned how to approach life with a positive image as the IB program has influenced her mind, body and soul.

“At AGC, Maximiliano is receiving the fundamental building blocks for becoming a culturally-versed, creative, engaged, passionate, socially and environmentally conscious, imaginative and critical thinker.”


As a laboratory for innovation in education, AGC is respected internationally. Since 2008, the Academy for Global Citizenship has been:

• Invited to the White House as the Midwest’s first and nations second “Healthier US School,” the USDA’s highest honor

• Designated as a National Green Ribbon School by US Education Secretary, Arne Duncan

• Asked to present to the United States Department of Education on scaling our innovation

• Authorized by the International Baccalaureate (IB) Organization as an IB World School

• Provided a Congressional Record from the US House of Representatives

• Commended by Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Governor Pat Quinn as a model for Chicago

• Recognized in an array of local, national and international media sources, including the

New York TImes, Good Morning America, NBC, ABC, Fox News, NPR, Atlantic Monthly,

Forbes, Monocle, Chicago Tribune, Sun-Times, Univision, Forbes and many others.

Rep. Foster and AGC Students

• AGC is outperforming our nearest public school by over 32 percentage points in reading,

37 percentage points in math and 19 percentage points in science.

• AGC is outperforming district averages on the standardized state test by over 5

percentage points and neighborhood public school averages by 11 percentage points.

• AGC published a Sustainable Schools Handbook that has been utilized by schools

locally, nationally, and across the globe.

• AGC’s team members have presented at over 70 conferences, teacher trainings and TED

events, from as far as Uganda, Brazil, Colombia, Germany and Japan.


The Academy for Global Citizenship is an open enrollment, free public school for students living within the City of Chicago. Enrollment forms are available online at http://agcchicago.org/families/enroll.

AGC Students Just Want to Rock & Roll all Night (and Study Every Day)

16 Sep

AGC’s After-School program is looking for a guitar teacher to help our students express themselves through the art of song. We are looking for a guitar teacher to introduce our beginner students to the instrument and help them to play their first songs.

The details:

-Weekly hourlong guitar lessons on Tuesdays
-Hours: 3:45-5:00pm (lessons begin at 4pm 1 hour of instruction)
-Students: grades 3rd-7th
-All classes held at 4941 W. 46th St.
-Class size: 10 or less
-AGC to provide guitars, instructor to provide all other lesson materials.
-Please contact mchaidez@agcchicago.org to apply
Agc students with guitars

AGC to Host Chicago Ideas Week Lab

16 Sep

This fall, AGC welcomes Chicago Ideas Week participants to go back to Kindergarten as an AGC student for a day. We will condense our long school day (AGC students enjoy 17% more instructional time than the majority of their peers) into just two hours, jam packed with student-centered, and hands-on holistic learning opportunities. Guests of our CIW lab will also have the opportunity to tour our K-2 campus and meet our schoolyard chickens, Daisy and Puddles.

We invite you to join our CIW Lab from 1:00 – 3:00 pm on October 15th. Click here to register online today, tickets are extremely limited. 

Tickets are $15 for non-Chicago Ideas Week Members and will support the amazing efforts of Chicago Ideas Week, including CIW talks, labs, Artist in Residence programs, and youth, and young adult community initiatives.

The Academy for Global Citizenship Goes Back to Kindergarten

Go back to Kindergarten for a day of yoga, composting and fun in the garden at the most innovative Chicago public charter school. A laboratory of educational innovation, the Academy for Global Citizenship is a holistic learning environment that includes a rigorous International Baccalaureate Program, dual-language classrooms and globally relevant topics alongside the types of educational initiatives you likely don’t remember from your Kindergarten days—gardening, school-wide composting and chicken coops. 

AGC Seeks Special Educators

9 Sep

AGC’s holistic, student centered learning environment supports a diversity of learning styles. As such, we are proud to serve a special needs population that exceeds district averages. In the past 7 years, roughly 20% of our students have received special education services. Like their peers, these students are participating in the academically rigorous International Baccalaureate Programme, learning a second or third language, presenting independent research on globally relevant topics, and excelling in an academic environment that encourages their growth as a leader in their community. Thanks in great part to the work of our special education team,  our special education students achieve tremendous academic growth, often at a higher rate than their peers. 

Please share the job description below with special education professionals far and wide.

Special Education Teacher

Teachers are responsible for helping all of our children learn, classroom management, participating in professional development, providing feedback to others, taking ownership in the development and improvements of Individual Educational Plan (IEP), consulting general education teachers on special needs, and communicating to staff and parents regarding student performance. Teachers must be committed to promoting in students the student profile qualities as described by the International Baccalaureate Primary Years Program (PYP): inquirers, thinkers, communicators, risk takers, knowledgeable, principled, caring, open-minded, well-balanced, and reflective.  Special Ed teachers report to the Principal.

Key Responsibilities:

  • Teaching: provides students with special needs with various modes of learning to accommodate their different learning styles, by using inquiry, real-life experiences, current events, information technology, the dramatic arts and other lively sources of knowledge.
  • Instructional Strategies: responsible for using many different types of instructional strategies including teaching through inquiry, differentiating instruction (different learning styles and language backgrounds) and data-driven instruction.
  • Technology Integration: incorporates technology across all disciplines as much as possible, where appropriate.
  • Professional Development: participates in coaching cycle, stays abreast of latest techniques and demonstrates an eagerness to learn new skills and share experiences with others.
  • Curriculum Development: works closely with coach, other teachers to ensure taught curriculum is aligned with Common Core Learning Standards, the IB PYP/MYP, and is achieving the goals of the school.
  • IEP’s: designs and writes the IEP or 504 plans of students in his/her caseload based on evidence-based data and in regards to Spec. Ed law.
  • Performance Assessment: sets high and measurable goals for student achievement and evaluates student progress in the instructional program.
  • Community: encourages the use of community resources, cooperates with families in welcoming them to our community, and maintains solid communication with all community members.


The Academy for Global Citizenship…

  • Believes great teaching can transform the world
  • I convinced all students can learn
  • Strives every single day to make our school a remarkable place
  • Is not afraid to take risks to do what is best for students
  • Takes our name and mission seriously
  • Doesn’t settle for good but strives for great


We are looking for staff who…

  • Have a big heart to match a big brain
  • Are bilingual in English/Spanish (preferred, not required)
  • Want your work to define best practice
  • Respect and thrive in a dynamic, changing, and growing environment
  • Know extraordinary things can happen when people work hard
  • Are approximately 10 degrees off center


Working at AGC means…

  • Being surrounded by extraordinary, inquisitive students and hard-working, like-minded colleagues
  • Thriving in a dynamic, changing, and growing environment
  • Being held to high standards for continuous personal and school improvement
  • Having high academic expectations for every student in the school everyday
  • Trying things again and again and again until we get it right
  • Getting your hands dirty in our school garden
  • Supporting Teaching through interdisciplinary International Baccalaureate Units of Inquiry, balanced literacy, arts integration, and TERC Investigations Math
  • Working in an environmentally friendly setting
  • Working hard and thinking outside of the box to do what is best for our students


Required Skills and Experience:

  • 5+ years experience as an educator (ideal)
  • Bilingual and biliterate (English/Spanish) (ideal)
  • Familiarity with IB program (ideal)
  • Familiarity with various educational models: Inquiry-based teaching and Responsive Classroom
  • Believer in culturally relevant teaching
  • Strong leadership skills and personal drive
  • Ability to maintain a safe, orderly environment
  • Strong communication skills
  • Proven ability to play a lead role in their grade level
  • Experience accommodating students with IEPs within the classroom


Education Requirements:

  • Bachelor Degree in Special Education
  • Master’s Degree in Special education(ideal)
  • State of Illinois Teaching Certificate (Type 03 and 10)
  • Endorsement or extensive experience in ELL instruction (ideal)


Students Self-Calm With Rock Gardens, Yoga and Mindfulness Traning

27 Aug

“This made me feel so calm,” reports an AGC 1st grader while drawing paths through a bowl of salt and glitter, “now when someone tells me to calm down, I know what to do.”


AGC’s K-2 Wellness classes found inner peace this week while making Japanese rock gardens. “Some children did it for 15 minutes without a sound,” says Ms. Jayaram, “they felt so calm and peaceful.” Through this and other activities in Ms. Jayaram’s Wellness class, which, for their current Unit of Inquiry is focusing on strategies for “inner peace,” help students at AGC develop crucial self-control skills.


Mindfullness board

Often, children are asked to adjust behavior, but lack the skills or knowledge to do so. “My parents are always telling me to be calm, and I didn’t know what to do. Now I know what to do,” explains a student in Ms. Jayaram’s class. Other strategies explored during this unit have included yoga, mindful breathing, and guided mindfulness meditation. After each activity, students are asked to reflect on its helpfulness. Their responses have been overwhelmingly positive. 


Research shows that students who are taught to manage their own energy and stress levels achieve higher GPAs, work habits, and cooperation behaviors. Relaxation programs can also increase emotional balance and reduce feelings of helplessness and aggression. At AGC, we have found these curriculum, nutrition education, social-emotional curriculum and support, and the Responsive Classroom approach to be instrumental in creating a peaceful, vibrant and positive school environment. This approach allows us to fulfill our mission to foster mindful leaders who take action now and in the future to positively impact their communities and the world beyond.

For young students, Ms. Jayaram recommends”Sitting Still Like a Frog” for Guided Mindfulness Meditation and the “MindUp” mindfulness curriculum. 


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