Not many things get us more excited than seeing our educational designs supporting learning and contributing to students’ achievements. When Associate Steve Michener stopped by Boston Prep, designed by Studio G Architects, and spotted an award from the April 2019 Pull Toy Showcase along with the winning entry in the school’s front display case we knew we had to learn more!
According to Boston Prep’s news post, “Mass STEM Hub, whose goal is to provide schools with access to and support for the next level of STEM education, organized the Design Showcase, held on April 26 at the Peabody Essex Museum (PEM). Over 100 middle school students attended, presenting their projects from their Automation and Robotics courses, an engineering and design curriculum offered to schools in partnership with Project Lead the Way (PLTW). In this course, students design, build, wire, program, use motors and sensors and troubleshoot – learning how engineers do their work while using the engineering design process throughout the course. Student teams were challenged to invent and build a pull toy using what they learned about simple machines and gear designs. The toys for this showcase were developed as part of a design challenge to create 21st century versions of vintage pull toys from PEM’s collection.” After receiving feedback from volunteer judges who are STEM professionals, winners were selected in multiple categories. One of Boston Prep’s three teams earned the Overall Showcase Winner award recognizing the highest overall mastery of the engineering design process and a demonstration of a deep understanding of the mechanics of their pull toy.
The need for STEAM educational spaces is greater than ever. Whether designing a classroom zone with flexible furnishings and surfaces that are easy to clean or dedicated maker spaces with high tech equipment, Studio G consistently seeks opportunities to support each school’s curriculum and goals. As part of the Boston Prep school expansion, Studio G worked with the visionary leaders at Boston Prep to design the new interdisciplinary design space, the Phoenix Design Center. This space supports innovative STEAM learning, through an engineering and design curriculum offered to schools in partnership with Project Lead the Way (PLTW). PLTW coursework educates students about the history and development of automation and robotics while engaging in hands-on activities, projects, and problem-solving utilizing the engineering design process.
Filled with natural light the Phoenix Design Center (PDC) features a kiln, water-cooled laser cutter, and projection onto a full wall moveable partition with a whiteboard finish for teacher-led instruction and problem-solving.
Flexible furnishings foster small group, hands-on collaboration between students. Technology and power are integrated throughout the design center through pull down electrical cords and interspersed data outlets. The PDC is an environment that is adaptable to new educational approaches that will inspire Boston Prep teachers and students for years to come.
To learn more about Studio G’s educational designs https://studiogarchitects.com/portfolio/learn
To learn more about Boston Prep https://www.bostonprep.org/