Thursday, December 1, 2016

The Venerable Losang Samten: Mandala of Compassion

Losang is a teacher, artist and author. Originally from Tibet, he traveled to the US in 1988 under the direction of the Dalai Lama and has spent the last 25 + years  traveling extensively, sharing his knowledge of Buddhist philosophy and meditation, as well as his skill in Tibetan ritual arts. He worked for one week in the McVeigh Community room last spring term on a sand Mandala of Compassion speaking to and working with students from PK-12, parents, and teachers. 

Sunday, November 13, 2016

Lower School Padcaster Program

The Lower School excitedly welcomed back GA alumni Josh Apter and Jon Goldberg, both class of ’89, the cofounders and inventors of The Padcaster.
"The Padcaster is a patented, rugged multifunctional iPad case that transforms the iPad into an all-in-one mobile production studio.  The Padcaster enables consumers to shoot, edit and upload video on the fly – or stream live right from the iPad.” - The Padcaster website
In addition to donating 15 of The Padcaster packages – including a light, a microphone, a teleprompter – as well as 10 tripods and 10 green screens, Josh and Jon spent most of the day on campus providing training for some Lower School teachers and a handful of fifth graders.  The day culminated in an assembly during which they presented their gift in honor of Phy Chauveau 1760. The class of1989 was Phy’s first class at GA, and her love for and interest in making movies is what launched this whole project.  It was an exciting and touching experience for all involved. by Guest Blogger Tom McGlinchey

Sunday, November 6, 2016

Middle School Engineers

Sixth grade science teachers Jim DiFranco, Maura Saurman, and Kate Cassidy and their students have been engineering solar ovens in the Makerspace of The Beard Center for Innovation. In this project based unit, students learn about energy transformations and use of materials to harness sun energy to design and test solar ovens.

Sunday, October 23, 2016

STEAM Class in Lower School

4th Grade classes rotated through their first STEAM Studio session last month, a new program team taught by Jess Killo (art) and Craig Newberger (science).  Session 1 was all about team building, creative solutions, trust and collaboration.  As the students worked together to create elaborate masking-tape-mazes, they also had to plan for how they would safely get their classmates across, over and through the obstacles.  Not only were they working together to creatively engineer a course, but they were forecasting potential problems and creating solutions to test out.  Once the brave and blindfolded volunteer was called forth, the teammates carefully guided them to the starting point.  From there, the students could only use verbal instruction and encouragement to get their classmate through the maze.  They quickly realized that this instructional process was just like coding!  Upon reflection, the students pointed out many aspects of the experience that connected to science, technology, engineering, art and math.  

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Middle School Greek Day: Bring on the (Coding) Games!

Last spring, during the annual Greek Day in the Middle School, students incorporated algorithmic thinking and coding exercises as part of a day filled with fun. They developed a competitive game using  Code Academy to generate as many lines of code as possible, the grade that completed the most lines of code were awarded points for Greek Day. Students also engaged in modified Simon Says by acting out lines of code.

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Lower School and Upper School Partner in Hands on Science

The second annual lower school /upper school assembly took place late in September where student had the opportunity to buddy up and collaborate on paper engineering projects. Lisa Martin and Jamie Anderson who direct the Kids Teaching Kids (Engineering) Program organized the event along with Allison Sasson, Lower School Assistant Head, and Dave Martin, House Head Director in the Upper School.  Students teams worked in labs ad classrooms in both divisions including the maker space in the Beard Center for Innovation.