A big congratulations to our Middle School Engineering and Design students who participated in the "Schools That Can" Design Challenge. The challenge brings together middle school students, their teachers, corporate executives and community leaders from different cities to engage in a real-world design experience: transforming urban public school buildings into smart, green and efficient structures. The virtual event allowed six schools located in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and New York to go head-to-head on innovative design concepts.
"Best Overall," "Best Design" and "Best Presentation" awards were given, and our Middle School won "Best Overall" which is the highest award. Under the guidance of Mr. Jason Clarkson, three students, Caleb Gratner, Raymond Wauthier, and Angelo Valeriano, prepared a 4-minute presentation that offers plans for reducing greenhouse gas emissions, including updating the school's heating system, replacing standard lights with energy-efficient LED lighting, and placing solar canopies in parking lots and rooftops. The presentations were judged by a six-member panel of expert judges. We are so proud of our students, and their hard work and commitment to this project.
This project asked kids to learn how to approach real-world problems the way design professionals do, develop their problem-solving toolkit, including the intentional application of creativity, collaboration, communication, and critical thinking, both in and out of academic situations, and cultivate STEM skills, particularly the use of design thinking, coding, and/or 3D design. Students engaged in design cycles of ideating, creative prototyping, testing, and continuous improvement using workplace-relevant tools.
Click here to read the full press release from Schools that Can.