A Different Perspective
Across the country, teachers have trouble keeping students engaged in their classroom. This issue is compounded by the fact that most students are unable to find content personally relevant or have trouble conceptualizing the information they are learning. This lack of engagement can be directly linked to a lack of academic performance. The world is changing and as a result, our instruction must change as well if educators are going to reach today’s students. Luckily, cutting edge technologies can provide educational experiences that were previously impossible. To increase student engagement and performance, a small group of Ashland Middle School students will work with teachers to develop immersive educational experiences through the integration of virtual and augmented reality technologies. Once fully developed, students will work with participating teachers to administer and present these experiences to all students. To gauge the effect of these lessons on student engagement and performance, students and teachers will participate in a pre and post-lesson formative assessment.
Solving for Tomorrow
Today’s students are required to learn more information than ever before. However, students often compartmentalize this information and are unable to apply it outside the very narrow parameters of the relevant classroom. However, if they are given the opportunity to apply this learning in a real-world context, they are able to transcend the classroom and break cognitive barriers. To achieve this goal, students will be offered a Solve for Tomorrow class in which they are able to apply their STEM skills in the development and creation of an authentic solution. Once they have completed their solution, students will demonstrate their understanding through a presentation to their peers and community at the district Makerfaire. In addition to the Makerfaire presentation, students will also complete surveys and formative assessments to measure and monitor their growth throughout the year.