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Highlights from the Design Lab

So far this year, the Design Lab (or D-Lab) has been filled with problem solving challenges, team building activities and lots of fun exploring together! Students are learning that mistakes are okay in the D-Lab, encouraged even, and together we can learn and grow from mistakes, making changes and improvements to projects if needed. Our goal is for all students to become problem solvers inside and outside the classroom.

Elementary Highlights

Students in K-5 integrated literacy into the D-Lab while building STEM projects. After reading “The Three Little Pigs”, students were challenged to build sturdy houses which couldn’t be blown down by the big bad wolf. Using different materials and applying concepts of structural engineering, students were overwhelmingly successful with their designs. Currently, our elementary grade students are learning about concepts of sinking and floating as we integrate Science into our curriculum, with a focus on “buoyancy”. In order to further explore this concept, students will use popsicle sticks to design a boat or raft that will float on water.

MS Highlights

Popular Design students have worked together to build a waterslide out of recycled items, as well as design a structure using coffee filters with the challenge of supporting the weight of 50 pennies. Students also worked on creating a “Lego Maze” for a micro robotic creature known as a Hex Bug. We will be transitioning from this activity to an up-cycle project in which students will put on their inventors caps for the challenge of taking an old item and recreating it into something new and useful. Over this trimester, students will also be introduced to a variety of coding applications as well as the program Cura, which is one of the 3D printing programs used with our 3D printer.

Podcast production class is currently working on recording children’s books on the Garage Band app, with the goal of allowing our lower elementary students to listen to the stories while reading along either in the library or in their classrooms. Later in the trimester, students will also be working on producing movie and book review podcasts.

Open D-Lab

Returning this year is the ever-so-popular lunch recess option: Open D-Lab! During this time, students are able to create, build, design, and explore using the Maker Space section of the lab.  And as a new option this year, we’ve also provided materials and tools to support students in creating their own clothing designs during Open D-Lab!

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