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Posted on May 10, 2019

Projects involve Quincy Innovation Academy students and community

Fourth in a series

“Projects” are a learning experience at a deeper level. For a student, a project evolves along a continuum of opportunities to more fully experience the world around them. They gain understanding of their academic studies when seeing them applied to create something of value, develop interpersonal skills like empathy, problem solving, decision making and leadership as they engage with and direct others. Confidence and communication effectiveness are developed as they reach out beyond school for research, field questions, order materials, or schedule events. And tenacity – that very important trait – is instilled as they try, fall, get up and try again; also learning that failures are not bad – they are implicit to a success process and the need to keep going.
To that end, “Big Picture Learning” at Quincy Innovation Academy requires students to engage in both Community Based and Individual Interest projects.
Societal shifts to promote more civic engagement in community is one driver of change in education. In a Community Project, students are challenged to solve a problem, meet a need or design a solution that will benefit the place where they live and work.
An Individual Interest project must respond to their own curiosities or desire to learn, make or understand something unique to their own interests.

The Backpack Project
“I knew what it felt like to go without food,” said a student who joined in with the idea that meets a need in response to their own experience. The purpose is to provide low-income students in the Quincy School District with a sack of food for the weekend. The food is stored at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church. Students applied for a grant and it was accepted. Students received a donation from the Ernie Forge Foundation. They have reached out to local food stores and businesses such as El Mercado and Central Bean to obtain discounted or donated food. Students say they have learned how to contact companies and about budgeting and time management.

The Shoe Project
This project was introduced to us by the physical therapist of a young girl in our district. She has a severe physical disability and is unable to access or find shoes. Recognizing the value of a solution, students jumped right in saying “it felt right.” And “I knew the girl and thought it would be cool to help. I want to be a nurse and it fit my interest in nursing.” Students have partnered with Superfeet, of Bellingham, and American Shoe Shop, of Wenatchee, for support. Students also received a donation provided by St. Paul’s Lutheran Church.

The Museum Project
“I was able to help assist and guide in the setup and use of the new display. It was interesting to me because it allowed involvement with my community and helped me with leadership skills.” The Quincy Historical Society is introducing Augmented Reality Tours – a very exciting project.

Personal interest projects
“I was interested in learning what it took to become an electrician. I researched where to go to school and learned that both Perry Tech and Big Bend have excellent programs. I like that it will be a challenge and was surprised at the years required in apprenticeship. I was also pleasantly surprised at the pay scale for electricians.”
“I needed a vanity with better lighting. Building it myself allows me to make it to my exact needs.”
Projects! It’s really about the Process!

By the staff of Quincy Innovation Academy