This post was written with the help of student Hannah Johnson.
Since my arrival at HWRHS, I have been trying to look differently at the learning spaces throughout the building. Not necessarily in the classrooms; instead, in the hallways, the library and the cafeteria. After talking with some local groups about 21st Century Skills and how these skills require different ideas about our teaching and learning spaces and how we furnish them, one group felt it was imperative to support our idea. Thanks to the HS/MS Friends group, students came into school after a long week of midterms to find a brand new learning and collaboration space.
At first glance the six cafe tables simply look like a new place to eat lunch with a small group. However, the charging stations located in the center of each table are perfect for plugging in devices that most students and teachers have one or more of. Student Bobby Grinnell said, “I love the charging aspect because it is so applicable to 21st century student life.”
Our focus on Critical Thinking & Problem Solving, Communication, Collaboration & Creativity & Innovation will open the doors to truly changing education within our school. Student Sarah Herlihy said, “It is a nice change of pace and opens up more opportunity for technological involvement throughout the school day.”
Looking back, students simply piled their book bags in the over sized hallway, but now we have a great new look that adds utility and style while giving us a new space to collaborate in new ways. “I think they add flavor to the school community” said student Erika Leach. Throughout the day today, the new space was packed with students. We look forward to delving into new, up-to-date ways of changing the face of education at HWRHS and we are grateful to the MS/HS Friends group for believing in a transformative idea.