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U.S. Treasurer Inspires SmartLab Students

United States Treasurer Rosie Rios spent time with students in the Slater Middle School SmartLab in Pawtucket, Rhode Island.  Ms. Rios is passionate about inspiring kids, especially young girls, to pursue an interest in math and science.   While inspiring students, Ms. Rios was herself inspired by the achievements of Slater students in the SmartLab.

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How Cool is This!

Fox News 29 in San Antonio spent a day in the new Davis Middle School SmartLab and filed this video report. The SmartLab at Davis is the first of a District-wide implementation in all San Antonio School District middle schools.

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The Real World

We talk a lot about preparing learners for the “real world”.   Over the years, we’ve used terms like workforce readiness or 21st century skills, but it’s always been an important part of our job as educators, and it’s certainly a focus in the SmartLab.  Often, the best we can do in a classroom is simulate real world situations and challenges.  It’s a good start, but many educators strive to do more.

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And the hits keep on coming...

My last blog entry referenced several local newspaper articles featuring schools with new SmartLabs.  No sooner did I hit the “publish” button than this Englewood Herald article crossed my desk.

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SmartLabs in the News

This is always an exciting time of year for us as new SmartLabs open with the start of the school year.  It's also an exciting time for many of the local communities as they get their first peek at their new SmartLabs.  Here are a few articles we've found in local press.  SmartLab programs can be hard for reporters to wrap their minds around and then summarize neatly.  We think these articles do it nicely.

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Don Hense selected for Charter School Hall of Fame

I’ve had the pleasure of writing about our friends at Friendship Public Charter Schools before.  They have been at the forefront of innovative and effective education since inception fifteen years ago.  And we are justifiably proud that SmartLabs have been a key element of the highly-successful educational model in every one of the Friendship schools.

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Student Ammon Love's STEM Education Experience in the SmartLab

As I’ve said before in this blog, it's all about the kids!

My absolute favorite thing to do is drop in on a SmartLab and ask the students, “what’ja doing?”   The learners are so enthusiastic and their project ideas are usually WAY more interesting than anything we come up with when developing the curriculum.   It's also wonderful when a student tells me the SmartLab is their favorite place in school - but I don’t expect them to think about what goes into creating a learning environment like the SmartLab.  Their job is to learn.

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Ronan SmartLab Robotics Team - World Champs!

And the hits keep on coming…

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Congratulations Max Brooks - NASA Outstanding STEM teacher award winner!

We were so proud to learn that one of our favorite SmartLab Facilitators, Max Brooks, was selected NASA District of Columbia Space Grant Consortium Outstanding STEM Teacher!  

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A New Approach to STEM Education

There’s a broad consensus that American education needs increased emphasis on STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics).  Surprisingly though, there’s little clarity or consensus on the best way to address this need.   

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