Connecting student work to real value
When projects are authentic students use an academic framework to complete tasks
that have value to themselves and the community. Authenticity exists in a project
In the Commons Project, learn how collaborating with local architects, designers, construction contractors, and other professionals raised the stakes for Mendocino High School students, whose project effects the entire community.
- Goals and outcomes are defined with input from community mentors and professional practitioners.
- Students' work is evaluated in a professional context.
- Community partnerships (for example, through business and industry, nonprofit
organizations, governmental agencies, personal networks) are a foundation
for the work.
Giving academics real meaning
"Why do we have to learn this?" The teacher who can effectively answer this question does so by giving students the opportunity to use projects to explore the ways in which academic information has practical meaning and application in the world outside of the classroom. Authentic projects help students make this connection by:
In Get a Grip, see how students from John Marshall High School in Milwaukee, Wisconsin balanced client needs, time, academics, technical skills, and budget constraints to produce an industry quality video.
- Connecting them with individuals in the community who apply academics as part of their work.
- Providing opportunities for them to apply academics in areas of interest by observing or working with professionals in the community (such as through job shadows, internships, or mentorships).
- Creating opportunities for them to plan and implement complex work that produces professional quality products.