For the past few years Mrs. Mildrum and Mr. Hadd have guided students in an Independent Study Choice Class. Typically this type of student learning experiences produces many amazing and diverse projects. We always end with a project fair to allow students to share their work with parents, teachers, administrators, and fellow students. This event is usually a rewarding experience for the student presenters and serves as an appropriate conclusion for the class. This year our fair was expanded by including Mrs. Payne's Fashion and Technology Class Projects. In all, 26 individual student projects were on display stretching between the Innovation Lab and Enrichment Room. The event was very successful attracting numerous visitors and inspiring authentic conversations about the work. Projects ranged from jewelry and light up clothing to perpetual motion machines and robots made from tooth brushes!
In the last week of our 7/8 Prototyping and inventing choice class we have transformed the Innovation Lab into a open ended problem solving and invention space. Students were presented with a list of problems that exist right here in the lab, at school or in our community. Additionally students were free to add problems that they had identified. The one thing these problems had in common is that an invention could possibly solve them. Throughout the block students have been introduced to invention tools such as 3d design and printing, coding, Arduino microcontrollers, circuitry, soldering electrical components, and use of physical materials. Students have also experienced the design cycle and now understand that invention is a problem solving process that involves tinkering, trial and error, setbacks, and even starting over. This open ended inventing process has created such an atmosphere of energy and excitement in the lab! Check out the gallery below to see what the students have been working on.
GEMS Innovation Lab