Today was the last day of our Cities arc! It’s hard to believe that we’ve completed the very first arc of this school. Although it doesn’t feel like its come to a close to me and the rest of the staff, the kids were so ready to show off their hard work to their parents tonight. They finished their portfolios with pride this morning and spent the rest of the day prepping the school for the parents’ arrival in the afternoon.
We were extremely lucky today to have the help of some volunteers from TechSoup! While their servers were being moved, the TechSoup folk wanted to volunteer their time to nonprofits in the city and we were so glad to have their support as portfolios came together throughout the day.
In the afternoon, Mackenzie led a sushi-making activity so that the kids could get ready for the Exposition parent event.
They made a beautiful sign to welcome visitors to the end of the arc.
Ellen ordered about 300 pictures for the arc wall that one of our incredible parent volunteers Mark put up this past week.
The kids were so excited to help!
Showing off portfolios to parents.
And of course, the tours of Kid City.
Seven weeks of Arc:Cities.
Twenty kids, six (and some) staff members, eleven field trips, eleven guest experts, fourteen days of building, three days of reflecting and presenting great work, seventeen rooms in Kid City.
So much learning, both by the kids and the staff, about cities and being at a school like ours and how an arc actually works outside of drawings and brown paper. We’re getting so much stronger and wiser than we were on September 6th, and we’ll continue to grow and expand our minds as we figure out the way this place works and learns. All I can say is wow. I’m so excited to see what this school and the people in it can do next.
Another fantastic day of reflecting and playing.
While I had initially thought that the Exposition phase would be kind of a let-down after the fierce activity of Exploration and Expression, I asked a few kids today what they thought of this portfolio idea and they said they were really liking it. Such a good sign.
Sharing bits and pieces of writing and pictures.
And of course, a break at the park.
Before the day started, the kids took a moment to appreciate the hard work they have done in Kid City. And what better time for a school photo.
Unlike the first two phases of the arc, this one was a little bit of a mystery. What does Exposition look like? Is it different this time because it’s the first one? Can we convince the kids that reflecting and recording what they’ve done is not just a good idea but a great one?
So it turns out the answer is yes! Things came together like stone soup (as Mackenzie put it) and the day ended up to be a huge success. The prompt? Choose 10 pictures from the school’s Flickr account and use them to tell the story of your arc experience (quite a challenge when considering the 2,000+ photos from the last six weeks).
We ended up with enough adults to work with the kids 2:1 and sometimes 1:1, enough computers for each duo to look at their individual journeys through Cities, and a hard-working but sometimes slow printer.
It was astonishing to see that everyone focused and helped each other stir memories of the last six weeks of school in the Exploration and Expression phases.
A few students took a moment to reflect by writing thank-you notes to the experts they’d seen during Exploration.
While half the students was hard at work on their portfolios at the school, the other half went to the Potrero Community Garden with Mackenzie. In the afternoon, the groups switched.
The kids’ mild-mannered attitudes, no complaining about switching gears into reflecting, not building… who could ask for more in a first Exposition phase?