What is Project-Based Learning?
Project-Based Learning (PBL) gets kids excited about learning by tailoring learning opportunities to match their interests. Students pursue their passions and academics at the same time by earning credit for projects they design.
- Love to draw? Create a comic book about about an interesting person or event in history.
- Video gaming more your speed? Learn about an ancient civilization and build a game.
- Like to hunt or fish? Turn your trophy into an anatomy lesson.
- You like to cook - bake a cake that represents the layers of the earth's crust.
- Want to take a hike? Photograph and identify wildlife along the way.
Click here for answers to more Frequently Asked Questions
Click here for a Showcase of Student Projects
Why this learning model makes a difference for students and families?
Students don't have to be taught, they need to learn. This is a distinction. Student-Driven Project Based Learning allows students to take initiative and be responsible for their learning. When a student is interested and actively engaged in their own education they feel empowered, confident, and it builds the foundation for further successes - in and outside of the classroom. JGESA parents say it best...
Out of the Classroom, Into the World
Learning can not be contained to a classroom. Set on 300+ acres JGESA's campus is a living classroom for environmental education. Being surrounded by nature has amazing effects on the body and mind. When your school is in the woods daily hikes become a part of life. Canoeing on the lake builds teamwork and monitoring nesting bird populations ties learning to living things.
We also encourage students to develop real world skills through experience - Out of the Classroom, Into the World.
JGESA hosts experts in a wide variety of fields to work with students here on campus. Frequent field trips to any number of local locations - most free or low cost- expose students to all sorts of hands-on learning. Older students also have opportunities at more robust trips such as Sea Horse Key Marine Biology Lab in Florida, a Jr/Sr wilderness trip to Lake of the Woods and more.
During twice yearly Experience Days students must complete an off-campus activity such as a job shadow, trip to a museum, or visit to a park, and then share what they have learned. But, this type of learning is not limited to Experience Days. Students are also encouraged to seek outside learning opportunities on their own. Turn a family vacation into a history of your destination, volunteer at an organization that matters to you and create a fundraising campaign for them, interview a family member that has a unique life experience and turn it into a short film.
Tell me more about what my student's day will look like.
With a maximum enrollment of 150 students JGESA staff and students get to know one another, creating a strong sense of community. Each student has is assigned an Advisor and Advisory. At JGESA we don't "teach" we guide and advise students as they learn. This is why we call our staff "Advisors". Each Advisor has a group of approx. 18 students that he or she works with. Advisories are made up of students in all grades, meaning students grades 6-12 all share the same spaces. This allows for students to learn at their own pace. Older students can serve as mentors for younger ones.
Each morning begins with Advisory - this is a short session during which Advisors talk about the days plans and may do community building or other activities.
Students will work independantly, or in small groups on projects for most of the day.
Activity Time is offered daily. This is a chance for students to get out of the cabin and get active. They have a variety of choices (weather dependant) such as a hike, games, and clubs.
Students bring a lunch from home, but have access to microwaves and refridgerators. Students enjoy a social time with like aged peers (split middle and hgih schoolers) while eating. With a maximum enrollment of 150 students JGESA staff and students get to know one another, creating a strong sense of community.