8th Grade Celebrates Earth Day by Making Reusable Shopping Bags


For Earth Day, eight grade students up cycled a t-shirt into a reusable grocery bag. They have been learning about the impact of human consumption and discussing ways to minimize our imprint on Earth. Students found this project enjoyable, made connections to their studies in Science and took home something incredibly useful.

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Kindergarten Tours Riverwalk


Recently, kindergarten students went on the RiverWalk and had a blast. They walked from school and met a guide at the footbridge behind the pool.  Their guide, Mr. Tony, taught them about how trees send out seeds, and why trees are important for our water and our world.  They looked at all different types of trees and even saw a turtle.  The arrived back at school exhausted and full of new ideas about how to help trees.

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4th Grade Science – Weathering, Erosion & Deposition


Fourth graders have been studying weathering, erosion, and deposition. They collected used soda bottles to perform an experiment with their classroom and science teacher to demonstrate how people can take measures to prevent losing soil to erosion.  IMG_1635 IMG_1636

First, they collected dirt and made hills and mountains inside their soda bottle environment models.  Then they sprinkled water over them and collected the runoff to examine what happened.  Next students collected organic matter and rocks near the streambed to try to prevent erosion and repeated the experience.   IMG_1639

They then looked at the streambed itself to see how erosion and deposition resulted in the shape of the banks.  The kids loved connecting real life examples to their understanding of science principles.

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Inventors Camp: Secret Weapon for Teen Inventors


Have you have ever suspected your creative teenager is capable of so much more? Then you might want to check out the secret weapon The Learning Center! Charter School discovered. Three years ago, the school teamed up with California based high-tech company, Table Top Inventing to challenge area students with hands-on experiences in emerging technologies. The company’s traveling science workshops, called, Inventor’s Camp is the brain-child of Table Top Inventing founder and CEO, Steve Kurti, who grew up in and around Murphy and Franklin, NC.

The Learning Center! is once again partnering with Table Top Inventing as part of the school’s themed summer enrichment offerings, designed to challenge students and inspire a generation of kids to be tinkerers, explorers, innovators and deep thinkers.

Murphy is one of only seven stops across the U.S. for Inventor’s Camp, a traveling workshop designed for rising sixth graders to high school seniors. For four days, from June 13-16, Murphy areaInventors Camp students will be immersed in hands­on learning, using emerging technologies such as 3D printing, 3D CAD design, artificial intelligence, programming and physical computing in a fun and challenging environment. Last summer, teen inventors created space cranes to safely land asteroid probes. The summer before, they created top-secret security systems.

Steve Kurti, self proclaimed “Chief Maker and Mad Scientist” holds a PhD in physics and has an undergraduate minor in education. Together with his wife, Debby, who has a Masters degree in Educational Technology, they make a dynamic team committed to creating interesting learning activities focused on the cutting edge of emerging technologies.

“We create challenges worthy of their intellect with tools powerful enough to hold their attention,”Debby Kurti remarked. “This is the best experience to jumpstart your teen’s curiosity and technical skill.”

If you have a 1st through 5th grader, The Learning Center is also offering “Murphy Mini-Maker Expo 2016.”  On June 13, from 6-8pm, this age group will be immersed in hands-on exploration of 3D printers, blinking LED art and digital design software to make their ideas come to life.

Act quickly because the window is closing on the deadline to apply. Call the school at 828.835.7240or visit www.ttinvent.com/inventorcamp to register your child for the June 13-16 Inventors Boot Camp and Murphy Mini-Maker Expo 2016


7th Grade Reads to Kindergarten


Collaboration between grades benefits all students involved. Seen here are students in seventh grade reading to students in kindergarten. The older students get to practice reading out loud but this activity also flexes their mentorship and leadership skills. Likewise, the younger students enjoy the additional reading time, change in setting and the bonds they form with older students.

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20-Time Projects in Compacted Math


Back in early April, 6th-8th grade students in Compacted Math presented this semester’s 20% Time Projects in poster presentations to their classmates.  Since January, Compacted Math students have spent one day per week studying a topic of their choice.  They chose the topic, designed their studies, and developed a poster presentation to communicate what they have learned.  The topics were hugely varied and truly represented students’ interests.


To find out more about 20-Time in education, visit 20timeineducation.com and prior blog posts about 20% Time Projects here at TLC by typing it into the search bar found in the right hand side bar.

8th Grade Science — Hydrosphere


Students in eighth grade have been studying the hydrosphere in Science. They have learned about the pros and cons of offshore drilling and this study culminated in a debate for each side. Students were on teams on each side of the debate. Even the judges were students and they created a rubric to evaluate the teams. Students were challenged to look at this serious environmental issue through multiple lenses and the thoughtful debate proved their research and learning was thorough.

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