Innovation in Schools
What is innovation in schools?
The traditional computer lab purpose has evolved. The purpose used to be to expose students to information technology. Since TSD has moved to 1:1 student access, the general computer labs have lost their relevance. Most students learn technology skills via their teacher and by integrating digital tools into their learning tasks. The 1:1 device is the TSD student's pencil, paper, textbook, individualized and personalized tutor, as well as their voice and choice and creation tool. Through collaborations with business partners, our labs are being redesigned to provide access to specialized technology that supplements the students’ devices and gives teachers creative ways to facilitate learning.
In our middle and high schools, most labs are specialized for subjects such as business, industrial fabrication, computer science and graphic arts. In some middle schools and most of our elementary schools, older labs are being converted from traditional computer labs to Innovation Labs. These new learning spaces are modularized. Based on space, funding, and curricular limitations, schools choose among eight different modules, including:
- Multimedia Studio (K-5 or 6-8)
- Fabrication Shop (K-5 or 6-8)
- Health & Medical Zone
- Fluid Works
- Computer Science Lab
- Innovation Den.
Students use design thinking, ideation and specific processes to build skills and create both tactile and digital learning artifacts. Our Innovation Labs provide spaces for students to create, critically think, build, code, and ideate with specialized technology that cannot be accomplished with students’ standard devices. These specialized technologies align with and support college, career, and technical opportunities in high school as students progress through the grades in alignment with the K-12 Computer Science Framework and ISTE Standards for students.