One of the most unique aspects of the school day at Vine Academy is our Projected Learning class. It's a favorite of students, parents, and teachers alike... but what, exactly, does this class entail?
Each day, our students have two full periods of project based learning. This interdisciplinary class encourages in-depth and hands-on exploration of topics using relevant, real-world methods of research, preparation and presentation. These projects encourage creative thinking, independent learning, and the development of discipline-specific skills.
WHAT ARE THE PROJECTS?
Half of the projects are linked to history, writing, literature, and the arts. The other half are linked to science, math, and engineering. Examples of student projects have included building and testing toothpick bridges, various historical expositions, the construction of dioramas, science fair experiments, writing screenplays, engineering catapults, writing creative stories and fairy tale variants, and planning trips around the world… just to name a few!
IS THIS AN ELECTIVE?
Nope! Project based learning involves projects that are part of our school curriculum. They intentionally connect to students’ studies in all subjects, especially history and science. More importantly, this class is designed to teach critical areas of executive functioning through the planning and execution of these projects.
HOW DO PROJECTS TEACH EXECUTIVE FUNCTIONING?
By taking all the projects that students do across our curriculum and concentrating them in one class, our teachers have a unique opportunity to teach executive functioning skills. Through an ongoing series of projects, teachers gradually teach each student to break down work into manageable tasks, stay focused, meet deadlines, and produce high-quality results.
Four times per year, we put our students' projects on display for other students, family members, and friends. Check out these moments captured at our 2017 November Showcase: