The Freshman in the Food For Thought class have been investigating the guiding question, How are food systems shaped and how do they shape the world?. As a part of this investigation, the students have been studying the Agricultural Revolution which led the class to the question, What would it be like to return to humanity’s roots as foragers?. The students went on an Eat The Neighborhood tour to seek out edible plants in Lincoln Park with Dave Odd from Odd Produce. The experience showed the students that there is food all around us, we just have to know what to look for.
This year, our annual Spring Fundraiser will celebrate the music that shaped our world as we rock our support for students ready to take on the challenges of tomorrow. We asked members of our community to reflect on the music that inspired their worldview. Humanities teacher, Brent Mix talks about how grunge and punk rock gave him a sense of community and inspired him to create a better world.
Freshman in the Food For Thought class went to Metropolis Coffee Company’s roastery to learn about the life of the Coffee plant. Students were welcomed into the state-of-the-art roastery where they got a behind-the-scenes look at each step of the process. Metropolis is dedicated to serving a stellar cup of coffee, but what’s even more important to them is respect. Respect is at the core of the company’s philosophy; from farmers to consumers. It was an eye-opening lesson on the effort it takes to be a responsible part of the production chain.
This term, we modeled final presentations after Ted Talks to give students a different way to demonstrate their learning. Each presenter was given five minutes in the spotlight to deliver a lecture or facilitate a discussion. We were fortunate enough to practice effective communication and presentation skills from the educators at the Goodman Theater before the day of presentations. Armed with these new skills and the knowledge from their classes, the presenters wowed us with their creativity and eloquence.
Our Winter Term Community Day put all of the students’ different skills and talents to work. The morning started off with some brainteasing riddles and a relay race that tested their brains and brawn. After lunch, it was a team-on-team showdown of Gaga Ball, Bowling Pin Dodgeball, and Foosball. After a good sweat, the teams slowed it down and wrote poems about what they are grateful for at GCE. We ended the day with a talent show organized by members of the Music Makers club. This joyful and laughter-filled day was a great way to close out Winter Term.
Sophomore, Tymony examined the art of the short film as her independent study. She completed the course, Ollywood during Elective term in which she learned to look at films with a more discerning and critical eye. Inspired by that course and her own passions for story-telling, acting, and directing, Tymony set out to write and produce an original short film. Her film, Errand takes a surrealist look at two teenagers’ unlikely meeting in the aisles of a grocery store.
The point is the poetry!!! This is our 7th year participating in the Louder Than a Bomb (LTAB) youth poetry slam festival and our poets were honored to have performed on the stage at the Metro Chicago at Semifinals. LTAB is the largest and longest-running youth poetry slam in the world and it all started in Chicago through Young Chicago Authors. The festival brings together thousands of youth from the Chicagoland area and invites them to share their unique stories through verse. We are so grateful for the platform that LTAB provides students to not only share their stories but to connect with other young poets. We are so proud of the work our LTAB team put in this year to advance all the way to Semifinals. We can’t wait to do it all again next year.
In the second unit of the Fuel class, the Freshmen have been pursuing the question, How does matter become energy?. In pursuit of an answer, students have been studying the equations for work and power, the differences between kinetic and potential energy, and how to set up mathematical functions using word problems. Students visited the Tesla showroom to learn about the mechanics of the most efficient battery-powered vehicle on the market. We talked to the resident expert, Dave who educated us about what miles per gallon really means, and how battery-powered cars blow fossil-fueled cars out of the water in terms of efficiency. Tesla recently released a more affordable model giving more people the opportunity to lower their carbon footprint.
The purpose of this Field Experience is to see the real-world relationship between energy and transportation, as well as what is possible for energy-efficient vehicles in the future.
At the end of this Field Experience, students will understand Tesla vehicles’ relationship to energy. They will have had engaged in conversation with an expert to understand where energy comes from, how it is transmitted, and how efficient Tesla cars are.
Our amazing Parents Association (Parents Unite GCE) and members of the student council organized another successful school dance. We are so grateful to have opportunities like these to connect with our community outside of the school day. This Winter dance was partly in celebration of the upcoming Valentine’s Day, but mostly in celebration of putting on our coolest PJs and dancing the night away!
The Juniors in Light, Sound, and Time have been focusing on light and investigating the guiding question: What would life look like without light? . In order to illuminate answers to this huge guiding question, students are examining how light could be captured and manipulated. As a part of this investigation, they built and experimented with pinhole cameras to better understand the role of light and time in creating photographic images. The class visited the darkroom at the Latin School of Chicago and met with photography teacher, Betty Lark Ross to learn more about the power of light.
The purpose of this Field Experience is to see the concepts of light waves and how we perceive them come to life.
Students will experiment light using their hand-built pinhole cameras.
We’re so honored to have hosted the out-of-this-world musicians from Crossing Borders Music as a part of our GCE Tiny Concert Music Series. The mission of Crossing Borders Music is to use music to promote the dignity of people from all cultures. The musicians transported us to Peru through soulful vocals and mesmerizing strings.
If you’re interested in playing a small intimate show, email [email protected]
In the third and final unit of the Ollywood course, students are investigating the elements of film post-production. As a part of this investigation, they have been examining the role of music and sounds in movies. For this assignment, they assumed the role of a foley artist and were tasked to create and add sounds effects to a classic movie clip with its original audio removed.
Nick Andros graduated in 2017 and came back to interview Cabell King, our new Head of School.
Get to know Cabell!
In the third unit of the Biomimicry Elective, the students have been investigating the guiding question, What would a fungus do?. In this unit, students have been investigating fungi and their role as decomposers in order to rethink their definition of waste. The students are drawing inspiration from fungi and other decomposers’ ability to recycle nutrients to turn linear systems into circular systems to design their own closed-loop systems. As a part of this investigation, they visited the Plant Chicago whose mission is to make healthier and more efficient cities by developing and sharing the most innovative methods for sustainable food production, energy conservation, and material reuse. The students got a first-hand look at an aquaponics system and the practical applications of closed-loop systems.
The students visited the Plant Chicago to learn about the practical applications of closed-loop systems.
The students explored an aquaponic system and attempted to design their own in order to demonstrate their understanding of closed-loop systems.
Students in the Game Changers Elective have been pursuing the guiding question, How do game components come together?. In this unit of this game design course, students have been examining the different physical components that make up a tabletop game. They investigated the fundamental design of boards, cards, and moving pieces in order to design and build a game of their own. As a part of the creation of their game, they visited The WasteShed Creative Reuse Center to find recycled materials to build a prototype of their game. The WasteShed is dedicated to providing Chicago with an organized, affordable, and reliable resource for repurposed art, craft, and school materials.
The purpose of this Field Experience is for students to buy materials to build a prototype of their original board games while learning to find value in repurposed materials.
Students will work in small groups to find the materials they need.
Genesis, a Junior is taking the elective course, Ollywood for the second time because she fell in love with film and film critique the first time around. Ollywood teacher, Brent Mix has created an advanced track of the course for Genesis, challenging her to take a deep dive into the works of Akira Kurosawa and to take on the role of assistant teacher. Genesis led a lesson on what it means to be a film critic. Take a look at the opening of her lesson.
Human Rights Day, recognized annually on December 10th commemorates the day the United Nations General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. On Monday, we celebrated the 70th birthday of the document by examining the preamble and discussing the progress and transgressions we’ve made since the document was ratified.
The students in the Ollywood elective have been investigating the elements of film and film critique. As a part of their investigation, they were challenged to bring famous movie scripts to life. The educators from the Goodman Theater worked with the students and provided each group with some practical tips on script analysis and performance.
We talk about and practice gratitude regularly at GCE. Our students and faculty recognize the unique and amazing opportunities we have as members of the GCE community. During Soapbox, we reflected on what showing gratitude looks like.