iDEA is a collaborative creative environment centered around industrial design, engineering, and the arts. Our community is made up of high school students, non-profits, professional organizations, and for-profit businesses of all sizes. Our goal is to form a collaborative learning environment where our partners can work alongside our student in design-and-build studios, forming public to private partnerships and giving both students and teachers access to professional opportunities as well as giving our partners direct access to students and teachers to inform their work.
iDEA students learn through projects, with teachers acting more like guides for students, posing challenging questions and working to embed learning targets within the context of student-driven, real-world projects. The curriculum aligns with common core standards in math, science, English, and social studies and follows the gold-standard project-based learning framework outlined by the Buck Institute. Any time you walk into iDEA, the students are excited to show you their latest creation, whether it’s made of wood, metal, or on a computer screen.
“Content” learning is applied and utilized during project-based learning that bridges classrooms with the real world. All students are exposed to experiences that stimulate the imagination, provoke inquiry, and create avenues for invention. They gain access to the kind of learning that inspires the desire to dream and achieve. They gain the confidence to follow their passions and to transport their ideas into the future.
We believe all students have the right to high-quality educational experiences that develop their unique needs and passion.
Our mission is to partner with community resources to change public education, emphasizing creativity and utilizing a fully inclusive model that educates the whole student through our values: Community . Empathy . Thinking . Balance .
Community - First and foremost, we are a learning community. Careful planning and design of school culture has helped us rely on the strengths of each staff and student. Students enter the school with the expectation to develop his/her leadership potential within and beyond our school.
Empathy - We seek to continually put ourselves in someone else's shoes and seek new ways of approaching a problem. Every member of our community has unique perspectives, strengths and struggles, and we strive to adapt our approach to see the world from their point of view.
Thinking - We challenge ourselves to dive deep into any idea, seeking a strong understanding as opposed to merely reciting facts. We believe in putting complex problems in the hands of inspired young people, setting the bar higher and higher beyond what even they assume they can achieve.
Balance - We seek both left-brained and right-brained thinkers, creativity alongside analysis. Seeking both macro and micro, we study the species and the ecosystem, the inflection of one note and the whole orchestra. We find balance in perspective and our schools seek to always show both sides of a picture.