Recently the halls of downtown Atlanta’s Centennial Academy echoed with the sound of excited students eager to share what they have been learning with visitors, family and friends.
The neighborhood charter school was filled to bursting for its second school-wide iCurate event. What makes iCurate more than a parent/student event is the school’s use of an innovative program, the Integrated Computer Science Project, which uses project-based learning (PBL), logical thinking and technology to connect ideas across projects in social studies, science, math and English language arts classes.
“This program combines our traditional core subjects—mathematics, science, social studies, language arts—with 21st century digital literacy skills, which are essential for success in today’s global society,” said Alison C. Shelton, Ed.S., Centennial’s Associate Head of School, Academic Affairs. “It is helping us meet our school’s goal of developing life-long learners who will make our world a better place.”
Students from grades K-8 tackled issues close to home, including revitalization of Atlanta’s historic Auburn Avenue area, noise pollution abatement, and chronic diseases often found in higher rates in low-income communities. They then bring actual solutions to community leaders for consideration.
“The program and the projects developed for iCreate offer a wonderful opportunity for community members, in-field professionals and other educators to learn more about what we’re doing at Centennial,” Shelton continued. “This is the future of education, and we’re excited to share it.”
The project provides teachers at Centennial Academy with time, resources and guidance to work together to create a project-based curriculum that aligns with academic standards, while giving students opportunities for creativity, interest-driven innovation and teamwork. Collaborative partners include Georgia Tech’s Center for Education Integrating Science, Mathematics, and Computing (CEISMC); the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE); CREATOMbuilder; MAD-learn; and WorkReadyGrad.