Photo Gallery

Until It’s Clear

The Freshmen in the Water class are studying the water cycle. In the process, students learned that infiltration is an important part of the cycle because as the water passes through layers of soil and sand, it is filtered and purified so it can be consumed. Using that information, students built water filters to address the guiding question, how would you cope in a water crisis?. As a part of this investigation, they studied pH levels and how to determine if water is potable. Ater they designed and built their filters, the students attempted to turn non-potable water into potable water.

Field Experience

Design with Empathy @ Working Bikes

Juniors in the Design & Engineering class talked to bike expert, Andrew at Working Bikes in Pilsen to learn about the mechanics of bikes and the purposes that different types of bikes serve. In the second unit of this STEAM course, students have been pursuing the guiding question, how are bikes designed and engineered to solve specific problems?. In their pursuit of an answer, students have been studying the concepts of weight, speed, acceleration, velocity, and mass and their effects on simple machines such as the wheel, the axle, and the pulley. To gain a better understanding, the students visited Working Bikes where they prepped bikes to be transported. Working Bikes gives new life to discarded bicycles and distributes them as tools of empowerment to local and global communities.

On the day the students visited, a shipping crate was waiting to be filled and shipped to the Kingdom of Lesotho in Africa. Andrew, the volunteer coordinator at Working Bikes showed the group how to prep the bikes and they got right to work. The experience was informative and extermely humbling.

Why?

The purpose of this Field Experience is to investigate the guiding question, how do bicycles impact lives?. The students talked to experts to investigate the evolution of bikes and how they are put together so that they can then design a bike that suits a person’s specific needs.

How?

The students talked to bike shop employees about the parts that make up a bike, their purpose, and the choices designers make when choosing to use certain parts over others.

Photo Gallery

Cooking with Homa Shojaie

Students in the Cooking workshop received a cooking lesson from visual artist, Homa Shojaie. Ms. Shojaie taught the students that cooking is definitely an art. There are certain procedures to follow and certain tools that make the task easier, but at the end of the day, intuition and passion make a dish extra special and delicious. Ms. Shojaie gave the students the tools, ingredients, and knowledge to make herb kuku, a baked omelet traditionally served on New Years in Iran. The green herbs symbolize rebirth, and the eggs, fertility and happiness for the year. Thank you to Ms. Shojaie for a cooking lesson that taught us a lot more than just cooking.

Field Experience

The Power of Design @ Beyond Design

Juniors in the Design & Engineering class met with Michael Prince, the president of Beyond Design. In this STEAM course, students are investigating what it means to be a designer. Through this investigation, students have learned that being a designer is far more than conceptualizing and designing a new product. Being a designer requires empathy, compassion, patience, expertise, and a whole lot more. This was confirmed by our visit with Mr. Prince. He shared stories about the trials and tribulations of starting his own design firm. He stressed the importance of empathizing with his clients, working with a diverse team, and embracing the iterative nature of the design process.

It was a unique and eye-opening experience to get a behind-the-scenes look at a successful design firm.

Why?

The purpose of this FE is to introduce the class to professional designers, and to get them to think like designers.

How?

Students talked to designer, Michael Prince and toured Beyond Design to understand the work of a designer.

Photo Gallery

Simple Machines with Sean Shaffer

Sean Shaffer, parent of Junior, Maeve came into the Design & Engineering class to teach us about the power of simple machines. Mr. Shaffer has a background in design and is an educator for the Chicago Park District. He came equipped with tools that demonstrated the physics of the lever, the pulley, and the wedge. The students have been pursuing the guiding question, what lies at the heart of our fundamental drive to create tools?. As a part of this investigation, the students identified scenarios and problems in which tools make a task easier and determined that simple machines are at the core of most tools.

Sean brought in the Lever-tator 3000, the Bully Pulley 3000 (both machines that he built himself!), an ax and wedge, and a crazy-cool chair pulley that all brought the physics of these simple machines to life. The highlight was a pulley system that allowed the students to pull themselves off the ground! Thank you to Mr. Shaffer for making physics so much fun.

Field Experience

Assessing Risk @ Capital One Café

Seniors in the Economics class met with a financial consultant at the Capital One Café. In this STEAM course, students are pursuing the guiding question, how do we make choices in a world of limited resources and limited time?. In the first unit of this course, students have been analyzing the value of risks, taking into consideration time, cost, and utility. As a part of this first unit, students have also been calculating and assessing the value of college. The experts at Capital One Café stressed the importance of short- and long-term goal-setting, saving for emergencies, and finding happiness and balance in all of it.

Why?

The purpose of this Field Experience is to investigate the guiding question, how do you determine value?.

How?

The students will talk with a financial consultant at Capital One Café to learn more about value, utility, and risk.