8th Annual Day of Service to Honor 9/11

At 9:00am on September 11th, students at The Learning Center Charter School gathered in front of the school to remember and pay tribute to the victims of the terror attacks on September 11, 2001.  After observing a moment of silence, the students mobilized into groups to perform acts of kindness and service across campus and the community.

Some students spent the day picking up litter along the local roadways, streams and hiking trails while others remained on campus and performed beautification projects such as tree trimming and weeding.  One group helped construct the newly expanded Aquaponics garden while another created new games for one of the school’s playgrounds.  Several students operated a car washing station where they washed teacher and staff cars.

“This year’s event marked the eighth year in a row we have performed community service as a means to honor the lives lost on 9/11,” said Mary Jo Dyre, school director. “Our annual day of service not only honors those victims, but develops the character of our students as well.”

5th Grade Science — Solids, Liquids, Gases

Fifth graders have been learning about the different states of matter — solid, liquid and gas. Ms. Jay read the book “Bartholomew and the Oobleck” by Dr. Seuss pausing at the creation of oobleck.  She then told them that they were going to create their own oobleck from cornstarch and water. The students had a blast and learned that oobleck is a “non-Newtonian” substance similar to magma.

Cherokee County EMS Visits Preschool & Kindergarten

Kindergarten and Preschool students continued to learn about the important community workers within Cherokee County with a visit from Cherokee County EMS workers. They loved asking questions and touring the ambulance.  Thank you Cherokee County EMS!

Murphy Police Department Visits Preschool & Kindergarten

We are so glad to have such a strong community partnership with Murphy Police Department. Thank you for visiting our young students recently and telling them about your important community function and answering all of their many, many questions.

8th Grade Science — Ecosystems Near and Far

Recently, eighth grade students have explored ecosystems near and far. They have focused their studies on Yellowstone and Great Smoky Mountain National Parks.  In addition to the science of ecosystems where they learned of species extinction and reintroduction, they have also been taking a look at the politics and leadership roles within our National Park system.  Seen here, students held a mock public debate between “US wildlife officials” and concerned citizens.

5th Grade STEM — Building a Display

Fifth grade students were recently given the challenge of building a tower to display a 3D printed plastic skull in their classroom. It had to be 24 inches tall and hold the skull for 30 seconds without collapsing. Students were given 10 straws and 50 index cards to do the project. By designing, testing, and redesigning, students built impressive display structures and thoroughly enjoyed the project.

Every Student Exposed to E-STEAM Education at TLC

Second graders at The Learning Center Charter School engineer, build, test, design and troubleshoot every day. Why? Because STEM education extends to every student at the school no matter the age.

Second grade teacher, Stephanie Hopper, engages her 7 and 8 year old students with STEM projects regularly.  This fall she will have her students build pumpkin wagons, design scarecrows with specific construction standards that the students must meet, and engineer “turkey hideouts” to avoid the Thanksgiving table.  The activities are seasonal but also fit squarely into the school’s STEM approach to education.

STEM stands for science, technology, engineering and math.  Our school takes it a step further by including entrepreneurship, arts and agriculture – E-STEAM.

Mary Jo Dyre, Executive Director, says, “Cultivating an E-STEAM culture is the guiding philosophy for our school and within that we offer an amazing array of learning opportunities for our students – each and every student from kindergarten through eighth grade.”

The STEM activities that Hopper integrates into her everyday lessons are a prime example of that approach. “My students plan, design, engineer, test, and reconstruct each and every day. It’s just what we do.” Hopper adds that no student is too young to be introduced and challenged by this approach. “I’m always encouraging them to expand and improve upon a design. I ask how they can make it better, wider, taller, or hold more weight. The students always rise to the challenge too,” said Hopper.