Mary Cantwell, a teacher at Mount Vernon Presbyterian School, will spend part of her summer mentoring and coaching teachers from around the country on "design thinking." Based on a model developed by Stanford University's Institute of Design, students identify real world issues, collaborate through research, test their results, and produce prototypes. Mount Vernon, a private school in Sandy Springs, uses the design thinking teaching method in a comprehensive way. Teachers encourage students to take ownership of their learning. Later this month, Cantwell will lead seminars and panels for teachers in Stanford's "Design Thinking Boot Camp." She is the only teacher from Atlanta invited to participate as a mentoring coach.
Jonathan A. Williams of Atlanta's Benjamin E. Mays High School has received a football scholarship to Wake Forest University where he plans to major in business. While at Mays, he was a student ambassador and took part in Eagle Academy Leadership. Jonathan also ran track and played basketball.
Woodstock High School senior Mary Margaret Penniman recently traveled to Istanbul, Turkey, to compete in the 20th Annual International Environmental Project Olympiad. Mary won a gold medal for her project titled "Use of Cyanobacteria in the Hydroponic Growth of Zea mays v. indentata as an Alternative Nitrate Source." Only 12 gold medals were given in the competition. There were 124 projects from 200 students in 50 countries. This is the first time a student from the Cherokee County school has competed in the event. Mary was also interviewed by a Turkish news agency about the competition.
Fourth graders at Atlanta's Warren T. Jackson Elementary are promoting the use iPads in the classroom through their movie “Common Sense: Kids.” Teacher Cortney Campbell and her students were inspired by the Apple Education Summit and its introduction of interactive, digital textbooks on the iPad. The students used what they learned to produce persuasive essays titled, “Common Sense: 2012,” inspired by Thomas Paine’s original “Common Sense” in 1776. In their writing, they explain why they believe e-textbooks will eventually replace paper textbooks. Campbell received a “Teaching in Excellence” grant from the school PTA and used it to create a professional movie, with the help of TINT Studios. To see the movie visit: www.CommonSenseKids.org.
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