7380 Girard Avenue, La Jolla

Gillispie School / Elementary  / Big Project Exhibition – April 20

Big Project Exhibition – April 20

Operating from the starting point that positive change in the world starts at home, we asked all of our classes in Grades K-6 to explore certain issues that are affecting our community (La Jolla/San Diego). Each grade level tackled one broad theme and dug deeper into a specific area of focus.

Kindergarten: Human Effects on Our Coastline
Grade 1: Fresh Water
Grade 2: Transportation
Grade 3: Pollution
Grade 4: Hunger
Grade 5: Homelessness
Grade 6: Civil Rights

Cycling through a design-thinking process, students first researched their topics, developed awareness of the issue as it exists around the world and here in our community, and develop questions, which led to specific areas of focus. Throughout the year, teachers and students have heard from local experts to empathize with those affected by the issues, brainstormed possible solutions or improvements, presented initial ideas to panels of adults, and re-imagined their ideas taking new information into consideration. The whole process will culminate in a school-wide gallery, open on April 20, that will showcase all the findings and work that has been done throughout the year.

Goals accomplished include awareness raising, design-thinking skill building, re-iterative problem solving, and, perhaps most importantly, empathetic caring for their community and the realization that they can make a positive difference. Even our kindergarten students helped to change school policy, which was recognized in the La Jolla Light!

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