Robots Invade Eagle Rock Classrooms

One of the more popular course offerings during a recent Explore Week here at Eagle Rock School was a course called Robotics that was met with such enthusiasm that we turned it into a five-week class now underway as part of our current trimester.

I mean, what’s not to like about a class that deals up close and personal with robots? This newest offering in computer technology is much more than a toy. It has the potential to create jobs in design, circuitry, software coding and hundreds of other possibilities.

robotics-at-eagle-rock-school-two

The new Robotics class gives students the opportunity to get some hands-on experience with this up-and-coming advancement, focusing their learning around four major concepts: Continue reading…

Eagle Rock Seeks Energetic, Enthusiastic, Empathetic Science Instructor

As the title of today’s post suggests, we’re actively searching for a science instructional specialist with special qualities far beyond the fundamentals of possessing a BA or BS in science. To our minds, the most important thing about this search is finding a science instructional specialist who has a genuine passion for working with adolescents — especially those who have not found success in a traditional educational setting, and who have demonstrated an interest in reengaging themselves in their own education.

Yes, a bachelor’s degree or a related science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) degree is a requirement, as are strong leadership and organizational skills. But our candidate should also have a desire and talent to reform educational practices as well as guide diverse high school students on a course that endorses and supports their own individual gifts and dreams.

STEM education at Eagle Rock School

We go to great lengths to handpick instructors who are comfortable with empowering their students to explore their surroundings and look inside their own lives in a deep and critical manner. As a result, we need to know if our new science instructor believes that science and scientific thinking can be taught in cross-curricular experiences that are meaningful to teens. And we ask them if a mountainside boarding school that bases its disciplinary approach on relationships and respect sounds like something they’d like to be a part of.

In addition to working comfortably around students, we here at Eagle Rock School and Professional Development Center insist that our instructors work well together as a team to develop empowering active learning opportunities for our students. And as an educational team, we actively look out for each other — encouraging our fellow educators’ success and constantly striving to improve our processes.

The science instructional specialist position involves: Continue reading…

Thoughts on Open Air Learning Environments

When I was growing up, my idea of a library was what you might see in an old black and white movie: Sit down, be quiet, and for the sake of everyone around you, don’t ask any questions. Fortunately, my college library defied this notion, instead structuring itself in a manner that promotes collaborative learning.

Upon entering the library for the first time I did not see mounds of books and people working quietly — although both of those scenarios played out on higher floors). Instead, I saw clusters of open tables with individuals mingling in small groups, speaking freely, and actively collaborating.

Classroom Image

I later learned that the Academic Commons at Goddard Library at Clark University was constructed intentionally to encourage group learning and problem solving, and to facilitate effective communication and information exchange. These are just a few characteristics that are becoming increasingly more valued in today’s workplace.

The whole design of the library and the way I was encouraged to learn in that environment offered me an entirely new understanding of knowledge. The Cornell Center For Teaching Excellence says it more beautifully than I can: “Knowledge is a social construct.”

From my first day at Eagle Rock the idea that knowledge is a social construct, and should therefore be Continue reading…

Eagle Rock Students Present Philanthropic Video to Estes Park Community

A short, five-minute video produced by Eagle Rock students that illustrates the importance of service work (see below) was presented to a banquet hall of more than 400 Estes Park community members earlier this month.

The occasion was National Philanthropy Day (Nov. 15), and six Eagle Rock students and four staff members debut the video at the YMCA of the Rockies in Estes Park. The focus of this year’s philanthropic event was “Youth in Philanthropy,” and several Eagle Rock students shot, edited and produced this year’s offering (see above), which focuses on Continue reading…

What Thanksgiving 2016 Is Like at Eagle Rock School

Once again, it’s that time of the year when the leaves fall off the trees, the temperature drops to single digits, and the sun has a shorter workday. To some, this portends the beginning credits of a horror movie where there is no beauty to be found.

But to me, this particular season marks the beginning of a wonderful time of the year. It’s a time when we can wear “cozy” clothes, like wool gloves and knit scarfs wrapped around our necks. It’s a time where hot cocoa with a marshmallow on top can be found held tightly in the hands of people on the sidewalks.

And we shouldn’t neglect the best part: the arrival of celebrations and holidays that create smiles and visits with friends and relatives in nearly every home.

Here at the Eagle Rock School and Professional Development Center, students and staff have actively prepared for the first of these late fall festivities: Thanksgiving. And at the center of all this holiday attention is Continue reading…