Instructions Formerly School of the Future Design Competition
The SchoolsNEXT Design Competition offers an opportunity to illustrate the kind of creativity that students bring to the planning and design process. The competition highlights the importance of well-planned, healthy, safe sustainable and resilient schools that foster student and teacher achievement and enhance community vitality. The annual competition, open to middle school students, challenges student teams to design their learning environments to enhance learning, conserve resources, be environmentally responsive and engage the surrounding community. The multi-disciplinary solution requires students to follow a planning process from the concept phase to completion of the project, with thorough documentation. The students will present their project to a jury for review.
Schools around the world are advancing the limits of public education by providing real-world learning experiences and opportunities for students to ask questions and problem solve, collaborate and gain experience tactile, hands-on work. This is a 21st Century learning approach where students are enabled, engaged and empowered through a STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts and math) curriculum, leadership and teamwork proficiencies to master the 21st century skills they need to succeed in today’s global economy.
|SchoolsNEXT Design Competition Curriculum|
Tips for collaborative planning and process for your SchoolsNEXT Project!
Welcome to EducationEvolution, a video project thought of and created by G/T middle students in the Dallas/Fort Worth area. Thank you for taking time to watch the video and visit this website! For more information about what the Education Evolution is and what it means, take a look at a quick summary of us here or head to the blog page.
Lake Oswego Junior High School, Lake Oswego, OR
Sutter Middle School, Folsom, CA
What an exciting journey we had with the Sutter Middle School team as they led us into the future and its endless possibilities – Crecerus. A play on the Latin word to grow, the Crecerus Institute's watchword became "with wisdom we grow." No idea is a bad idea at Creserus, rather learning from mistakes sows the seeds for curiosity and living an intelligent and useful life. Gathering ideas from all the stakeholders, and applying their mantra of "rigor, relevance and relationships," their design goal addressed the problems they found in their current learning environment. With an eye to the connection between learning and the global community, Creserus challenges the traditional grade structure, offering an environment for self-paced learning, grouped by passion and interest in four dormitory houses: Strexora for aspiring artists; Aulara for those who follow the path of technology and science; Cessna houses future leaders who strive to make this world a better place; and, Razelle for those who push themselves to their physical limits. While core academies cover the basics during the day, the four houses offer opportunities to study in their areas of interest, strengthening a student's career path. Each house manages an urban farming pod that produces energy as its contents are cultivated and nurtured. Those who do not work in the field are responsible for cooking and cleaning and all are encouraged to provide community service. Points are earned and may be used for the snack bar and to ride the Maglev train, a magnetic levitation train providing frictionless propulsion that enables a train to "float" above the track, capable of speeds in excess of 350 mph.
Neal Middle School, Durham, NC
Neal Middle School's Durham International Innovation Academy is for dreamers, believers, planners and creators. It is the place to pursue bold ideas. Demonstrating a very comprehensive planning process, the team utilized the DEAL engineering design procedure: Define the problem | Explore ideas | Apply a solution | Look back and learn. They learned the importance of planning and redesign, noting how their initial ideas evolved and were realized in the Durham International Innovation Academy. Demonstrating their passion for encouraging optimal student learning and conducting exceptional research of the needs of their community, the students focused on designing solutions to rebuild their East Durham community. After several exploratory field trips, the team discovered that Research Triangle Park (RTP) offered the greatest opportunity. Incorporating a STEM curriculum through a partnership with RTP, the students were introduced to groundbreaking research and future career paths. Replete with flexible and eco-friendly learning environments, opportunities for internships and engaging outdoor learning spaces, the Innovation Academy inspired change in the future of education for the entire community. Turning dreams into reality, the Innovation Academy provided healthy organic food, unique educational resources including a dual language emergent program and affordable electricity produced at their solar farm to the community—indeed these students will make a difference!
What's next for SchoolsNEXT? Just when we thought it couldn't get better, we were fortunate to have Frederick County Career & Technology Center, Frederick, MD design a pilot project for the impending high school component of SchoolsNEXT. Their 21st Century educational redesign addressed current overcrowding in magnet and special high schools, excluding many students from participating in these programs. Concern over how renovations would affect the environment led to the inclusion of renewable technologies and a variety of sustainable design elements, such as semi-permeable pavement solar panels, green roofing and double glass layer walls. The focus of the design was to maximize the space of the site and make learning for students more inclusive and positive. During an extensive planning process, the team decided to have three separate structures on the remodeled campus- the School of Design, the School of Service and the School of Fabrication. In addition to a large outdoor gathering space for group work and social activities, two outdoor classrooms lent a breath of fresh air to the campus. A system of Learning Stairs in the School of Design offers additional space for group projects, strengthening the bond of students at the school.
Teachers are encouraged to use the award-winning SchoolsNEXT Design Competition curriculum and outlined lesson plans as a starting point for the creative ideas of the participants of the student design competition and to develop skills in math, language arts, communication, leadership, science technology, architecture and facility planning.