By Alexander Danan, Margi Patel, Ryan Libiano and Mark Heintz

This is part of a blog series intended to document and define learning at Elk Grove High School throughout the 2018-2019 school year in order to increase student learning, give professionals autonomy, increase trust in our learning community, and foster a sense of personal-intellectual collegiality within the building across departments. You can read all of the previous posts here. I am going into each teacher’s class four times and then they are reflecting along their students on the learning that took place and what they hope for.

Patrick McGing and I gave our insight into what learning looked like in Patrick’s Intro to Engineering class. But what do the students think?  What do they want the class to be? If the focus of a school is meant to be on the learning, especially student learning, shouldn’t we spend time getting their feedback?

A group of teachers met with me last May and agreed on a common mission and vision.  Part of that vision included partnering with students in an effort to document and define learning at Elk Grove.  Each week, as a teacher and I share our thoughts on learning, students who are in the teachers class I visit will do the same.  This week, three students in Patrick’s class shared their thoughts on the first days of school. Here is what they had to say.


What did you learn in this lesson?

Although we did not yet dive too deep into the engineering process or have started any projects, I found the class still to be engaging in the sense that we were able to reflect upon how we do now and how we will do in the future (as in our future work life etc). Certain topics such as skills and interests seemed to have no meaning in the basics of the design process or literally anything that relates to engineering, but I finally realized that these topics would soon help me become aware of what strengths I have and fields they were applicable in. Furthermore, the class will teach me how to write a resume and prepare myself for future endeavors throughout my adult life.

What do you hope to learn for the next time?

Although we did not cover any engineering related topic in this lesson, I am still very excited to learn more about how to write a resume and cover letter and prepare myself for the future. Along with that, I am still very excited to dive deep into the engineering process and design my first object/thing (I don’t know what it is yet). Another huge hope is to finally use machinery such as the shopbot, CNC mill, Laser cutter, etc.



What did you learn in this lesson?

It’s only been a few days so we haven’t really started yet. I found some things interesting such as how to operate the machines and how to write the resume. We are going to start a project very soon so I’m really excited to find out how to do the designs and stuff. We also learned the things that we are going do it throughout the semester and I found most of the things very interesting.

What do you hope to learn for the next time?

I hope to learn how to use the 3D printer and the new technology. By end of the semester, I would love to know what I should put it in my resume and cover letter. I’m a senior and I’m glad I took this class because I’m sure it’s going to help figure what I want to do after high school in specifically engineering. I’m excited to learn more about the topics that we talked about. I’m also excited to see what interests me the most.


What did you learn in this lesson?

During the class I learned what our class is going to be and some of the things that we will be using in for the future. One of the things that stuck out to me was learning how to make a resume. Since I’m only 14 and don’t know anything about resumes or jobs, this was a nice piece of information that will be able to help me throughout life since people need jobs to make money and live. Another thing was knowing that we will be able to use a lot of cool tech that I’ve never even touched before.

What do you hope to learn for the next time?

What I’m interested in is going through the design process to create some different but amazing things. I also want to learn more about how to use all the machines to make 2D into 3D.  One of the biggest things that I hope I learn next time or later in the year is all the small things that I’m able to do while designing program so I can make what I’ve already made and make it better to the best of my potential.

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