Tala and Ragad, 10th graders from Saudi Arabia, have worked with our students for the last 2 years. They work collaboratively with our 5th-8th grade students to create a curriculum to explore together.
We strongly believe exposing our students to global collaboration builds cultural understanding, communication skills, and knowledge and awareness of the wider world. We participate in multiple global collaborations yearly, some are one-off collaborations and some are ongoing relationships built with other schools, students, and educators across the globe.
Each Friday morning we gather together on zoom. This particular Friday they had a fun science experiment for our students to dive into. This time we had our TK-4s join in on the fun! The goal of this experiment was to understand animal cell size and how that affects medical research.
Students had to use raw beets and cut measured cubes, ½ centimeter, 1 centimeter, and 2 centimeters. Once these measurements were made, the students soaked the beets in bleach to find out how the different-sized beets (cells) had different penetration volumes.
It was concluded that the size of the cell plays a big role in determining what is able to travel in and out of the cell. It was an interesting experiment for our students.
Engineering is a HUGE part of our curriculum here at Phoenix. It provides the opportunity for curiosity and exploration through design, experimenting, building, testing, and trialing.
Each team or individual designed their own airplane, based on the challenge they wanted their plane to go through. First, we brainstormed ideas as a whole school.
Some challenges were to see how far the plane would fly, what height it achieved, how long it stayed in the air, and how many flips it could do.
We experimented with an app called Wind Tunnel to experiment with different shapes, aerodynamics, and wind flow.
For the older students, it was a mathematical challenge to figure out the speed of their airplane. They used testing tables and documented their data after each flight so that they could learn from their mistakes and create better designs.
This is how we view failures at The Phoenix School…
Experimenting, and eventually
We are so excited to announce we have partnered with Montserrat College to offer volunteer internship positions. Today we are introducing you to Cassandra who is our Communications Intern. We feel so fortunate to have such talented young adults working with us!
Hello, My name is Cassandra (She/They), and I’m going to be interning at the Phoenix School as a Communications intern. I’m an animator, illustrator, photographer, and writer currently enrolled at Montserrat College of Art in Beverly. My job at the Phoenix School will be to help create images and writing to help spread awareness of the Phoenix School. I had a similar elementary school experience to the one offered by the Phoenix School, so I’m excited to be able to help provide the wonderful education I received to the next generation.
My main artistic passion is animation. I think it’s entirely unique in the way it combines other forms of art, and I think the things you can do with it are absolutely amazing. In addition to my other contributions to the Phoenix School, I’ll be running a short workshop on creating simple animations with flipbooks. This was my first introduction to creating animation when I was little, so I’m very excited by the opportunity to help introduce it to the Phoenix kids.
I’ll also be contributing my photography experience to the Phoenix School. I’ll be accompanying students on some of their excursions to places like the PEM and taking pictures to record those adventures they go on. I love photography for its ability to capture a moment in life, and I’m excited to use that ability to showcase the strengths of the Phoenix School. Every form of art I do has different strengths, and I’m excited to use all of them to contribute here.
I lead the Phoenix Kids in an animation workshop. Animation is my passion and my main artistic focus, and I really wanted to share my love for animation with the students. We used flip books to let the kids play and experiment with animation as an art form, the same way I did when I was little. My initial idea was to have them all start by making an animation of a bouncing ball so they could get the hang of using a flip book and learn how to animate something simple, before doing more complicated animations. I expected a lot of creativity and artistic ability from the kids, but I was shocked by how creative and driven the kids were.
The younger kids mainly focused on making a bouncing ball, and then coloring it and making a background, learning a simple animation while still expressing their creativity. The older kids were awesome, helping to teach the younger kids how to draw in a flipbook, and being really creative with the things they animated. They animated steam coming off a cup, a rocket taking off, an astronaut, and much more. It was really exciting to see how much the students loved to learn and express themselves through art and animation, and I was especially excited by how many of them had done animation with flipbooks before.
The Phoenix School has clearly fostered the same creativity and love of learning in its students that I treasure so much from my own early education. I’m excited to see what these kids do as they grow up, they’ve been well prepared for a good future. If kids with a passion for making animation keep practicing they’ll make for amazing animators, and lovely people to work with in the future.
Cassandra, Montserrat Intern