St. Michael’s offers a wide range of project based learning opportunities from Lower School through Middle School. By focusing on Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math plus project design in the Arts, students have opportunities to explore high content and high interest studies.
Over the past ten years, St. Michael’s has developed an exceptional Arts program in which middle school students select elective type courses from an impressive collection of project based instructional options. Over time, these courses have developed into categories of Visual Arts, Theater and Performing Arts, Stagecraft, Chorus, Band, and Technology Design. Artistically gifted students flourish in these programs and the confidence gained from high level performance carries over into student academics. Students with less skill or interest in the Arts discover hidden talents and are provided opportunities to develop skills in traditional “right brain thinking” activities.
The school has also created a complementary vein of opportunities in the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM). Similar to the Arts elective, STEM electives offer a dynamic range of project based opportunities in “left brain thinking” activities. Students with high analytical skills flourish in courses like MakerLab, Rocketry, Shipbuilding, and Robotics. Students with less interest or skill often discover new passions and find organizational structures in the sciences that help to inform their academic skills.
STEAM (STEM with the Arts) embraces the importance of design thinking in the creation of learning projects. Training in STEAM prepares students for “designing” their work. From classroom projects to workplace strategies, there is both Science and Art to creating product. St. Michael’s students learn the importance of design structure in learning but also the power of personal voice and innovation.
Projects include leadership skills such as public speaking, design based thinking, and collaboration. STEAM activities are instructed by St. Michael’s teachers as well as professional experts in the field.