Principal - Crayola Supplement - September/October 2016 - 14

T E C H NOL OGY & C R E ATIV ITY B LEND TO DEEPEN LEAR NING

a classroom or physical building. To
be authentic, STEAM projects must
ignite a new mindset in students and
teachers that shifts the view of power.

Playful Places
to Fail Forward
Principal Kirk Felix credits art teacher
Sandy Corson with the vision to take
an Art Integration Maker Space
concept to the next level at Jackson
Primary School in Williamsport,
Pennsylvania. Their Maker Space,
dubbed "Tinkertown," is more
than a collection of stuff; it's a true
catalyst for art-infused, student-driven
learning. "When a third-grader who
had previously been too afraid of
failing decided to take risks and try
something he wasn't sure would work,
I knew we had given the kids the
freedom to tinker with ideas. Then
when this same child reported his
plans to go to MIT, where he would
design flying shoes as a new way to
travel, I knew we had given our kids a
new way of looking at the future and
their potential," Corson reported.
The school's motto-"If you build
it, they will come. But if you let
them build it, they will learn!"-is
spreading. In fact, it caught the
attention of the district's curriculum
director and the local library. "We're
shifting the focus from right answers
to helping children come up with
questions and using art to design
prototypes," Corson explained.
"'From Tinker to Thinker' is the
hands-on approach to problemsolving that artists and designers use
to solve real-world problems."

Blair Dual Language School,
Waukesha, Wisconsin

Bullis Charter School,
Los Altos, California

E.M. Downer Elementary School,
San Pablo, California

Students and Explorer
Characters Bring
History to Life
"Let the creative process and student
interest drive projects-everything
else flows from that," advised Justin
Stephans, principal of Regency Park
Elementary School. The Title I school
in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, has a
passion for merging creativity and
technology to engage students. "Many
educators underestimate the power

14

Blair Dual Language School,
Waukesha, Wisconsin

Principal Special Supplement n September/October 2016

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