The Design Lab is a space created specifically for the Lower School that engages students in hands-on learning in all content areas. The room is equipped with a variety of tools and resources that lend themselves to design-thinking and inquiry-based learning experiences. The lab allows students to be collaborative, innovative, flexible, persistent, and self-motivated—the skills needed to be a successful leader. Lessons in the Design Lab focus on developing creative thinking and problem-solving skills and are centered on an Essential Question. Students are encouraged to seek out the answers through hands-on experimentation, research, and collaboration. Learning becomes more dynamic and meaningful because the students take ownership of their learning.
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Pre-K Design Time
Our Pre-K students are fascinated with building things and taking them apart. They are natural-born engineers! Exploring the Design Process throughout our curriculum creates a learning environment for students to take risks while they problem-solve.
During our weekly Kindergarten Tinker Time block, children are introduced to the Engineering Design Process. They help to define a problem, plan solutions, make models, test models, reflect and redesign.
STEAM Lab is a year long, first-grade curriculum that explores integrated, hands-on engineering, math, science, art and technology projects. Our goal is to better prepare students for the STEAM work they will encounter in future grades and to harness the tremendous capabilities of first-grade students to tackle complex problems.
The Second Grade Design Program is a cross-curricular experience. Each week Second Graders follow the design process to do at least one of the following: solve engineering problems, create art projects, and/or build three-dimensional models.
In Third Grade, the design process is implemented in a variety of projects across various content areas. Using the Design Lab, Third Graders work on two major projects. The first project explores the concept of electrical circuits. Students make and use two types of dough, one being conductive dough, and the other being insulating dough.
The Creative Design (STEAM) block is a designated weekly period for hands-on lessons in the Fourth and Fifth Grades. Students engage in various problem-solving activities while applying their core knowledge of math, science, technology, and art. Fourth and Fifth Graders are asked to use the design process model as well as their inquiry-based skills to complete their engineering challenges.