Innovation in Action: First Lego League Comes to Charles Hay World School
Paul Whitaker

On April 15th, students from Charles Hay World School and Bishop Elementary came together to celebrate their accomplishments in design thinking, project-based learning, robotics, computer science, and engineering… all through the magic of Lego! As participants in First Lego League Explore, students were challenged to learn about and design Lego models of different energy sources and how they are captured, stored, distributed, and used. Through the design-thinking process, students then had to test and retest their builds using principles of computer coding, engineering, and design. Finally, they were tasked with putting together a presentation that highlighted their learning journey, while also providing an audience of families, peers, and First Lego League judges the opportunity to see their Lego builds in action!

And what is a day focused on design thinking without the chance to see even bigger robots in action? In partnership with high school students from Regis Jesuit High School and Mullen High School, our Charles Hay and Bishop students had the opportunity to witness and drive robots that compete in state and national robotics competitions!

It was a day filled with innovation, authentic learning, and most importantly, fun and excitement! This experience was just another example of innovation in action, and how Englewood Schools creates big opportunities in a small district. Congratulations to all our young engineers from Charles Hay World School and Bishop Elementary!

Innovative learning opportunities are designed by innovative educators. A special shoutout goes to Brent Valente (STEAM Teacher at Bishop) and Kay Bolerjack (STEAM Teacher at Charles Hay) for recognizing the potential of bringing this opportunity to life for our students. Without their time, effort, energy, and focus on innovative teaching and learning, none of this would have been possible. Thank you, Brent and Kay, for your commitment to creating authentic learning experiences focused on the development of skills our students need to succeed in school and beyond!

Innovation in Action is a periodic column designed to highlight innovative practices happening in our district. If you are interested in submitting a story to be highlighted in a future “Innovation in Action” column, or if you have questions, please contact Paul Whitaker.