Mr. Anderson's room was abuzz with action Friday. Bottle caps became wheels and science theory became tested as students designed and built their own race cars.
Any lesson that involves power tools is a good one in my book, but another thing Mr Anderson's lesson highlights is how a teacher enriches students learning when they bring their own strengths and passions into the classroom and that happens in the 7th grade teamwide on the regular. (Looking at you, George, Hagerman, Milligan, Egnot, Ciambrone, Potter,...) What a beautiful thing to see Mr Anderson's gift with building (and expertise from the Lego Store!) being shared with the students toward mastery of their curriculum.
Thanks for setting up these work stations and offering this experience for our students. What a great follow-up to the NASCAR engineering lesson earlier this year. (scroll to the last Twitter link below for video of that 7th grade special event with a Piedmont Alum as teacher)
Making is at the core of Piedmont's culture WE MAKE SO MUCH, IT'S HARD TO HYPERLINK IT ALL!
Every day is #GlobalMakerDay at Piedmont! Well, maybe not EVERY day, but it IS extremely rare to walk the halls of Piedmont and not see students planning or building something across the curriculum and at all grade levels. Students are even making and creating during standardized test times, the time usually known as the least creative of the year.
Making is a given in our interdisciplinary passion projects, in Ms. Newburger's excellent Library Makerspace, in clubs, and in encore classes like Art, Band, Drama and Orchestra, but what makes me love Piedmont so much is how common it is in our core classes as well!
Consider Mr. O'Neill this week alone, from spears to swans his students were making. Props to him and all to the Individuals and Societies teachers whose students recently built their own tools when studying the stone age. They then created marketing campaigns for the tools and sold them to classmates.
The Social Studies classroom making tradition continues in the upper grades as students design build earthquake resistant structures and make period costumes living history exhibits, industrial revolution inventions (yet more industrial revolution), civil rights museums, (another Civil Rights museum) etc.
Teachers model making at Piedmont. Mr. Egnot models this by transforming his classroom into a war zone of WW1 trenches and the media center yearly through his maker skills and Ms. Frilot transforms her classroom to a poetry cafe with soft lighting, colors, and seating.
In World Language and Language Arts classes, students write songs for the Harlem Renaissance, compile playists and record their own podcasts, design and build whirligigs (both with wood, and with minecraft redstone)and recreate setting layouts and film their own movies based on their novel studies. They make culture clusters that make manifest their own poems.
In Math, students make large and small designs for the famous Scale Model Project. They also create their own board games and of course there's the yearly giant Prism-palooza!
In Science, they design their best protective egg case then test it out by catapulting the egg using a homemade catapult.
What does this culture of making lead to? It leads to kids who think creatively and make for special occasions and for no reason at all! They spend their free time building and making everything from towers to ASMR videos.
Stay tuned for more as we celebrate active learning and creating today and every day at #PiedmontIB. Send me your photos and videos if I don't happen by!
Genius Hour, Passion Project, 20 percent time...whatever you call it it's about the Love of Learning. At Piedmont we call it LOL and it happens every spring.
For the 4th year in a row, 6th graders showcased the information and skills they gleaned from their 6th block independent study time to their classmates, families, and teachers and once again we were amazed at the talent, dedication, creativity and diversity of interests of our class.
Thank you to the sixth grade teachers who each year braves the messiness that comes with student-driven learning. Thank you to the sixth grade students who shared with open arms just a little of what they love. You can tell it was all worth it when you see the proud and happy smiles in this video.
Curriculum Day CLips
If you'd like to learn more about Piedmont's curricular and extracurricular offerings, watch these clips from this week's Curriculum Day event.
You'll learn about IB grading, Service in Action, Math, Science, Social Studies, Language Arts, World Languages, Art, Music, CTE, Drama, a few of our many clubs and contests, as well as information about upcoming events including the Orchestra concert, school play, and international travel meeting.
This is just a small peek at a few of the great things we do every day here at Piedmont so contact your teachers or Ms. Gurthie if you want to know more.
Piedmont's team Finishes 7th overall, Takes 1st place in 3 Events
Even prior competition, we were proud of Mr. Ciambrone and the Piedmont Science Olympiad team. Fellow Piedmont students and staff sent them off to Wright State University with a parade to celebrate and now that they're back, we still couldn't be prouder of their 7th place national finish.
The Science Olympiad National Tournament consists of multiple science tasks. Piedmont Crimebusters, Dynamic Planet, and Hovercraft teams each scored 1st in the nation -and the Food Science team placed 2nd. It's such a pleasure to watch these students work and work hard they did, not just at the tournaments, but at practices and at home, too!
After their steller sciencing was done, the team found time to relax at Kings Island before heading back home with all their medals.
from the official Press release:
Piedmont IB Middle school from Charlotte was one of the top US Middle schools to compete and place in the top ten category at the prestigious 2017 Science Olympiad National Tournament held at Wright State University, Dayton, OH on May 19th – 20th. The highly talented team won 8 medals which include 3 Golds and 1 Silver medal in STEM subjects such as Hovercraft, Dynamic Planet, Crime busters and Food science to name a few out of 23 subjects. After placing first at both the Regional Tournament held at UNC Charlotte on March 11th and the State Tournament held at NC State university, Raleigh, on April 23rd, Piedmont IB middle school advanced to represent North Carolina at the National Tournament and placed 7th overall. This is the 4th year in a row that Piedmont IB middle school has won the Regional and State Championship in North Carolina.
"We are so proud of our entire team and how hard they've worked this entire year! 7th place at nationals is a amazing accomplishment!“ said Jackie Barone, the principal of Piedmont IB middle school.
“We encourage them to champion excellence in everything they do remembering that they are One Team, and they did that 100% all season!" Said Coach Corina Mota who also won the Coaching Excellence award at the National Tournament.
One of the nation’s most prestigious science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) competitions, Science Olympiad brings together 120 top middle school and high school teams advancing from state-level competitions. Rigorous hands-on and lab events led by experts from government agencies, top universities, industry and Science Olympiad state chapters cover topics in robotics, physics, epidemiology, astronomy, chemistry, meteorology, coding and engineering. “These winning teams exemplify the best America has to offer in science, technology, engineering and math,” said Gerard Putz, Science Olympiad president and co-founder. “We are proud of their incredible achievements and know their schools and communities will welcome them home like champions.”
Please see the official Press release from the National Tournament at this link:https://www.soinc.org/sites/default/files/uploaded_files/2017NatlTournPreRelease.pdf
Celebrating Piedmont : a blog of Happy Happenings
"Celebrating Piedmont" logs only a small fraction of the learning magic the teachers of CMS' Piedmont Middle School, an IB World School. create daily. In that sense, it is authored by all the staff and students of Piedmont. It is curated by Ms. Gurthie who can be reached at the icons above. She'll be happy to brag about Piedmont's teachers and students any chance she gets! Please note this blog has only just begun and we have so much to show off! Come back again soon!