Students at Carlson Elementary are looking forward to a new playground in which they play an important part in the decision-making. Students provided design input and will continue to provide input as the playground progresses.
Clear Creek School District is enthusiastic about bringing real-world experiences to their Empowered Learners. By involving Carlson students into the process of designing their own playground, students experienced self-advocacy, collaboration, and community engagement. Soon they will learn about architecture, purchasing, and construction. This work-based learning provides experiences that students will use in the future, no matter what their chosen path is.
The 32-year old playground was torn down recently and construction has begun. It all started last spring when Carla Cole of Space Inc. came to school and asked students, what do you want in a new playground? Ms. Cole created a design board for ideas, and overwhelmingly the kids said they wanted a playing field as part of the space.
“I am always game for discussing the process with the kids and giving them a taste of what design and engineering is all about. The building of a playground is so hands-on since this is in their backyard,” said Ms. Cole. She hopes to continue to engage the students and get them excited about what is coming.
“When the students saw the design, they were thrilled that their ideas were included,” said Brittaney Pauley, sixth-grade teacher at Carlson. “The project is taking longer than expected because of COVID, but I’m hopeful that the sixth-graders will play on it before they move on to middle school!”
Work-based learning is part of a major shift that Clear Creek School District embarked upon over the past year, as they became part of the Homegrown Talent Initiative. “This shift is all about connecting students with meaningful, community based learning opportunities. Every child in CCSD should see his/her place in our community, should be hopeful about the future, and have opportunities beyond graduation,” said Karen Quanbeck, superintendent. “As a school district, we have a responsibility to foster this hope, in partnership with our local businesses, organizations, educators, and families.”
If you would like to donate to Clear Creek School District on Colorado Gives Day, please click here to visit the ColoradoGives.org Clear Creek School District page.