Each spring at Career Magnet Academy, our teachers and scholars showcase the hard work they have invested in project-based learning experiences throughout the school. Over the course of our twenty-week pathway exploration, upper classmen in each pathway complete either one extended project-based learning experience or several smaller ones. Furthermore, each teacher conducts at least one project-based learning experience in each class–teaching their standards and objectives in the context of hands-on, real-world, problem solving experiences. Below are some images from our Pathway Showcase and some brief descriptions of some of the project-based learning experiences going on around the school.
Mr. Anderson, English II TedEd Presentations:
Mr. Anderson’s class piloted a TEDEd club with one of his English II classes this year. Each student came up with his/her own TED Talk, delivered it, and uploaded it to the TEDEd youtube channel. Their talks will be reviewed by the TEDstaff in California for a possible invite to the TEDEd conference in NYC this summer.
Mrs. Baker, Lifetime Wellness Group Research Public Service Announcement:
In a collaborative setting, scholars conducted thorough research based on a topic of their choice that is of great significance to their peer group. After presenting their research findings, they created a public service announcement as a visual representation of their research and to reflect the impact they hoped to make as a result of exploring that particular topic.
Ms. Black, English III, Historical Narratives/Historical Fiction:
Rather than suffer through the traditional research paper, we decided to have our students take on the role of storyteller. Each student selected a period of interest and performed many hour of independent research so as to become the resident expert on that time period. Once they had gathered a plethora of information from a wide range of categories, each student created an original narrative incorporating the gathered information. At its completion, students also designed a book cover to represent their narrative. Our hopes with this project were two-fold: strong research skills leading to greater knowledge of a time period, and well developed realistic narratives.
Dr. Blevins,Homeland Security Pathway:
Homeland Security scholars earned their FEMA Teen/Campus CERT (Community Emergency Response Teams) and wrote their own Homeland Security Oath. In order to receive their FEMA certifications, students will have to pass a campus-wide emergency response drill during the last week of school, pictures and blog forthcoming.
Mrs. Brown, Sophomore Chemistry:
Students participated in several curriculum based projects throughout the year. Classwide experiments ranged from crystal growing, acid corrosion of metals, and stoichiometry of “micro rocket fuel.” Students participated in a year long CAC Adopt-a-watershed program focused on water quality. Students also chose one project to investigate individually or within a team. Sometimes this project may substitute as their final grade if they demonstrate 10 or more major state Chemistry SPIs within their study. This year 22 students took their projects to UT to participate in the Southern Appalachian Science and Engineering Fair. Example projects include efficiency of hydrocarbon candles, vegan ice cream made with liquid nitrogen gas, Swann Pond water quality study, and several hydroponic experiments
Mrs. Rose, Advanced Computer Applications:
Based on the four pathways, students conduct a sustained research project to solve a problem or answer a question. Teams of students choose the topic and formulate the driving question. During the research phase, the team identifies sub-topics and conduct research to answer the driving question. Pathway research examples include: Types of Crimes; 3-D Printing/Scanning; Education in the U.S. and Other Countries; and Environmental Footprint. This semester-long project combines Tennessee state standards and PSCC outcomes.
Mrs. Rose, Sophomore Advanced Manufacturing Project Based Learning:
Mrs. Shinlever, Biology:
The PBL is titled, “Murder and a Meal” which also incorporates our Homeland Security pathway. The students had to analyze evidence that was part of a crime scenario and determine where the victim ate his last meal. The driving question was, “How can we determine the organic contents of an unknown substance?” In addition, we have had an on-going PBL this year in regards to water quality. The driving question is, “How do we assess and protect water quality?” My students are currently working on their third PBL. The driving question is, “How are biologists addressing real-world problems?”
Mr. Vickers, Algebra 1:
How do we best prevent and stop the exponential growth of diseases and viruses? In part by looking at past, present, and future cases to come up with a solution. Also, we examined how well the CMA student body does their part to stop the spread of disease and viruses, and the results might be shocking!
Mr. Vickers, 11th Grade Advance Manufacturing:
How can we create an ADA friendly footbridge using local resources to help hikers safely cross the 64 plus stream crossings with out a bridge in the Great Smoky Mountain National Park? Teams of students designed and tested their own bridges to find out the best solution to this problem.
Ms. Webb, World History and US History:
These students have been exploring culture and history throughout the school year. They will be displaying a variety of outstanding PBL products that they are willing to share and explain.
Ms. Webb, Teaching as a Profession Sophomores:
These students have written and illustrated children’s book about either being a magnet high school or about becoming teachers. They have been teaching the lesson from their books to the three magnet elementary schools in Knox County. They have made an imovie that will be playing throughout the pathway showcase. They will be available to discuss the books and their experiences.