A Boston area innovation studio for middle and high school students is bucking the traditional school model for what students love best: hands-on learning.
I have been talking about and working with a lot of ideas about innovation and creativity lately, during courses and workshops. TIme to take a step back and consider these core competences of the 21st century as one of the most important things to teach to young people.
The article shows an interesting example of project-based learning programs. Not mainstream yet, but maybe one day... Partly, completely, who can tell?
One think I am sure about: I have one at home who would love the "no courses, no classroom" thing!
Must read. excerpts.
NuVu is the brainchild of Saeed Arida, a former PhD student from MIT who believes that young people should be taught to solve real-world problems, like using new materials to design higher-quality prosthetics.
NuVu is a full-time magnet innovation center for middle and high school students. NuVu’s pedagogy is based on the architectural Studio model and geared around multi-disciplinary, collaborative projects. We basically teach students how to navigate the messiness of the creative process, from inception to completion.
No Courses: Instead, we have studios. Around 12 kids work closely with their 2 coaches on solving big (and small) open-ended problems.
No Subjects: Instead, everything is fused together. Students find themselves moving between a studio that requires them to design a telepresence robot to another that requires them to re-imagine Boston with a cable car system.
No Classrooms: Instead, we have an open space that changes all the time to adapt to the needs of every studio.
No One-Hour Schedule: Instead, students spend two weeks from 9-3 solving one problem.
No Grades: Instead, we have portfolios that document students’ design decisions and show their final products.
To make PBL more mainstream, the change may need to come from within. There’s a movement afoot to make project-based learning an integral part of every child’s education.
“We’re presenting a different way to think about education, he said. “Students are empowered to be creative, and actually execute on their ideas. Isn’t that the lesson we should be teaching our kids?”